Mansion House Banquet

I attended a fabulous banquet organised by The Worshipful Company of Solicitors of the City of London at Mansion House last night. Guests included the Lord Mayor, Lord Chief Justice, Master of the Rolls, President of the Law Society and Chair of the Bar Council. The City of London Solicitors’ Company, of which I’m proud…

Northern Ireland – why the MoD must take corporate responsibility

It has been reported that as many as 1,000 ex-servicemen will be viewed as manslaughter or murder suspects in the multi-million pound trawl into the Troubles. All 302 killings by British soldiers over 30 years of conflict are being investigated afresh — in marked contrast to the treatment of IRA terrorists and suspects who have…

International Women’s Day

Today marks International Women’s Day, an event observing the political, economic and cultural achievements of women all over the world. The 2017 theme – marked globally by performances, talks and marches – is #BeBoldForChange. People are being encouraged to take groundbreaking action to help improve gender equality. It’s a particularly resonant topic with divisive politics…

High heels row – my thoughts

An inquiry into work dress codes has exposed “widespread discrimination” against women, MPs have said. The investigation was prompted by a petition, being debated by MPs, that called for a ban on requiring women to wear high heels at work. MPs said they were “shocked” by stories submitted as part of the inquiry, which included…

Proud

Hilary Meredith Solicitors was last night named as Personal Injury / Clinical Negligence Team of the Year at the 2017 Manchester Legal Awards. The awards, now in their eighth year, took place at the Midland Hotel in Manchester.  Organised by Manchester Law Society, the evening was attended by over 650 guests from Greater Manchester and…

Better combat compensation consultation – my thoughts

Servicemen and women injured during combat will be shut out of the justice system under new Government plans to widen the scope of combat immunity to stop claims of negligence coming to court. Under the proposals, combat immunity – which provides an exemption from legal liability for members of the armed forces and the government…

Shiner – my thoughts and reflections

Disgraced lawyer Phil Shiner was struck off last week in a case which made national news headlines. I’ve spoken at length to the broadcast and print media over the last couple of days and, having had time to reflect, here are my thoughts: The public needs to have confidence in lawyers and our legal system….

Phil Shiner and the MoD – time for full disclosure

Today I am calling for full disclosure of the Ministry of Defence’s financial dealings with disgraced lawyer Phil Shiner and failed firm Public Interest Lawyers. Some of Shiner’s claims led to the £25m, five-year-long Al-Sweady inquiry, which later dismissed the allegations and said they were based on calculated and deliberate lies by Iraqis.  Others led…

Admitted as Freeman of the City of London Solicitors’ Company

I am thrilled to have been admitted as a Freeman of the City of London Solicitors’ Company. The City of London Solicitors’ Company is the Livery Company for City solicitors. It is unusual among Livery Companies in that it is a working Company and all members are required to practise or to have practised as…

Mohammed v MoD – at last common sense has prevailed

At last a sensible decision in the case of Mohammed and others v Ministry of Defence. https://www.supremecourt.uk/cases/uksc-2015-0218.html British forces held Taliban bomb maker Serdar Mohammed in detention longer that the permitted 96 hours for “imperative reasons of security”. The Supreme Court yesterday ruled that the rules designed for peace keeping could not easily be adapted…

Thrilled to be shortlisted at Manchester Legal Awards

We are thrilled to be shortlisted for Personal Injury / Clinical Negligence Team of the Year at the 2017 Manchester Legal Awards. The Manchester Legal Awards are organised by  Manchester Law Society to “recognise and reward the wide range of skills and talent this region has to offer” to the legal sector.  The winners will…

End of Ulster witch-hunt? Let’s hope so

I was pleased to read that police and prosecutors will be banned by law from turning investigations of British troops in Northern Ireland into a ‘witch-hunt’. Ministers have begun work on legislation which will compel authorities to treat historical cases with ‘proportionality’, reports the Daily Mail. Under proposals being drafted in Whitehall, there would be…

A sign of things to come?

I was concerned to read that the MoD is refusing to give details of how a young British soldier lost his life during a training mission in Iraq. Could this be a sign of things to come? The MoD’s current proposals on combat immunity would throw a blanket of secrecy over all military operations and…

Combat immunity – a Whitehall whitewash

The Secretary of State for Defence has announced new plans to place a blanket of immunity over all MoD operations. To throw a smoke screen called combat immunity over every military operation will send us back to the pre 1987 days when circumstances of all injury and deaths were secret and known only within the…

Intimidated by the Ministry of Defence – I’ve been there too

It has been revealed that the Conservative MP presiding over a parliamentary inquiry into the treatment of Iraq war veterans has received texts in the middle of the night from Government officials demanding he be less critical of ministers. Johnny Mercer, a former Army captain, told The Telegraph in an interview: “The texts have been…

Why I am calling for the Iraq Historic Allegations Team (IHAT) to be shut down

Today I am calling for the Iraq Historic Allegations Team (IHAT) to be shut down. There has been much reported about Ihat including the bully-boy tactics of investigators posing as detectives with powers of arrest when non-existed. The rights afforded to anyone arrested by the police under PACE have also been completely absent. Then there…

Shame on you Phil Shiner

A lawyer whose firm brought hundreds of claims against British troops for war crimes has admitted he acted without integrity and paid a tout thousands to find him cases. Phil Shiner, from Public Interest Lawyers, wrote a letter confessing some of his actions to the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal over his firm’s alleged involvement in false…

Northern Ireland – yet another witch-hunt

There are reports today that a new probe has been launched into all 302 killings by British troops in Northern Ireland during The Troubles. Around 1,000 former servicemen, many now in their 60s and 70s, will have their actions brought under scrutiny in the legal inquiry. The 238 ‘fatal incidents’, which involved the deaths of…