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Sebastian Naughton successfully acts for Claimant in Employment Tribunal concerning harassment and post-employment victimisation of employee

14th March 2023

Holland v A&A Coach Travel Ltd (Employment Tribunal)

This disability discrimination claim recently upheld at the Leeds Employment Tribunal and reported in the media concerned a Claimant bus driver with Asperger’s Syndrome, who was subjected to many years of name-calling related to his condition (on various social media platforms). The name-calling (not repeated here) was of a kind rarely seen by employment law practitioners since the 1980s/1990s. Matters then came to a head when his employers tried to take advantage of the Claimant by forcing him to sign a false “confession” which (wrongly) identified him as the responsible party for some vehicle damage. After he resigned in response, he instructed Chris Bennett at Taylor Law, who assisted him to bring an employment tribunal claim.

The case had some extraordinary features, including an upheld complaint of post-employment victimisation after the employer threatened to report the Claimant to driving authorities if he did not withdraw his employment tribunal claim (by an email headed ‘without prejudice’, but to which no prejudice was held to apply), and a costs order based in part on foul and abusive language directed at the Claimant and his solicitors.

The Tribunal upheld all complaints, made an award of aggravated damages and costs in the Claimant’s favour.

Sebastian Naughton was instructed by Chris Bennett at Taylor Law.

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Sophia Roper KC speaks at Weightmans’ Annual Mental Health Law Conference

9th March 2023

Sophia speaks about Deprivation of liberty: The Liberty Protection Safeguards to the attendees of the conference taking place at One Great George Street, Westminster.

Sophia is described by Chambers & Partners as: “incredibly responsive and thoughtful. She cares about her clients deeply; her advocacy is very impressive.”

Read more about Sophia’s practice here.

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Mark Harries KC featured in the March 2023 edition of Counsel Magazine

7th March 2023

Mark’s interview is part of their “Meet the Bar Pro Bono Award Winners 2022” article.

In this interview, Mark encourages all barristers to take on cases pro bono: “I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend pro bono work to junior and senior barristers alike. The variety of work available is fantastic and there’s no doubt the interesting challenges enhance your legal, advocacy and judgement skills.”

He also recognises the work of Chambers’ Professionals which allow them to take such cases on and congratulates Serjeants’ Inn Clerking Team Leader Tom O’Connor, winner of the Pro Bono Chambers’ Professional of the Year Award 2022.

Other topics include how his practice was shaped before and how it is now that he has joined Serjeants’ Inn and his experience taking on pro bono work.

Read the article here (page 15).

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David Lawson releases The CoP Guide

3rd March 2023

We are delighted to announce an interactive reference guide by David Lawson is newly published on our website and available here.

The guide collects the key principles of the Court of Protection and of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 in one document for speed of access. There are hyperlinks from the index to each section and from each case to BAILII and Even as a quick reference guide this runs to 160 pages and has over 650 references, easily accessible by a key word search.

Do please contact us here if you have comments or suggestions for an updated second edition.

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Keyham shooting inquests conclude

21st February 2023

The Keyham shooting inquests finished on Monday with the jury finding numerous serious failings in a particular Police Firearms Licensing Unit which led to the killer of the five victims having a licensed shotgun.

Bridget Dolan KC was Counsel to the Coroner at the five-week hearing.

Dijen Basu KC and Aaron Rathmell represented a current lead officer of the National Police Chiefs’ Council.

Edward Pleeth represented the Independent Office for Police Conduct.

“Bridget Dolan KC, the diligent and highly-skilled counsel to the inquest, left no stone unturned in her efforts to help the jury understand not just the incident in Keyham, not just the failings which led up to it, but the wider context of firearms licensing; policing in the time of Covid; mental health services; domestic violence; government legislation; primary care; special educational needs; and much more besides.”
ITV News

Read more about the inquests here.

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James Berry appears in large misfeasance in public office claim

10th February 2023

James Berry represented Merseyside Police in its successful defence of a misfeasance in public office claim pleaded at around £14,000,000. The Claimants, one of whom was a retired police officer, had been arrested in 2011 and prosecuted for drugs smuggling offences following a major investigation by SOCA (now the NCA) into the Claimants, their alleged co-conspirators, and their fruit importing company.

They faced trial in 2012 and then three retrials until one of the Claimants became unfit to plead and the prosecution of the other Claimant was stayed. Their claim in misfeasance in public office was based on contact one of the Claimants, a sometime police informant, had with a Merseyside Police officer about becoming a ‘participating informant’.

Following a trial which concluded on 10 February 2023, Mr Christopher Kennedy KC, sitting as Recorder of the County Court, dismissed the claim, finding that the Merseyside Police officer had not encouraged the Claimant to get involved in with an OCG, not failed to give criminality warnings and not fabricated a log of their contact to give a false impression as to those matters as alleged. Neither the material facts, nor malice, nor causation were made out.

James was led by Andrew Warnock KC of Deka Chambers

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Rachel Spearing appointed as a Specialist Panel Member of the Football Association Judicial Panel and its Safeguarding Review Panel

9th February 2023

Rachel Spearing has been appointed as a Specialist Panel Member of the Football Association Judicial Panel and its Safeguarding Review Panel for a 3-year term running until October 2025. She will be eligible to Chair Regulatory Commissions and Appeal Boards and Safeguarding Review Panel hearings.

Read more about Rachel’s practice here.

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Angus Moon KC and Eleanor Morrison obtain one of the largest sums payable in periodical payments for clinical negligence claimant

8th February 2023

Angus Moon KC and Eleanor Morrison obtained Court approval for the payment of damages to include periodical payments of a £700,000 per annum to the Claimant in NKX v Barts Health NHS Trust. Angus and Eleanor successfully established liability for negligence in a disputed trial which took place in 2020 (a copy of the judgment can be found here). After lengthy negotiations, settlement of quantum was achieved subject to Court approval on the Sunday evening before trial on quantum was due to start on the Monday. The settlement was approved by Mr Justice Ritchie on 7th February. The sum payable in periodical payments is one of the largest which has been approved.

Angus and Eleanor were instructed by Despina Kavadas and Megan George of Leigh Day who were instrumental in obtaining this very substantial award for the seriously brain damaged Claimant.

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Nageena Khalique KC and Sarah Clarke KC appointed as Deputy High Court Judges

24th January 2023

Congratulations to Nageena Khalique KC and Sarah Clarke KC for their appointment as Deputy High Court Judge. Many thanks to everyone supporting their practice.

Nageena is a renowned silk with expertise in a wide range of medical and public law including health, social care and education, the Court of Protection, inquests, clinical negligence and regulatory law. Her courtroom advocacy has been described in the legal directories as “lustrous and tenacious” and her past experience as a hospital dentist and Registrar specialising in maxillofacial surgery gives her “technical excellence”. Clients cited by Chambers and Partners note that “She is absolutely fantastic. She’s very assured, very composed and really knows what she’s talking about.

Sarah’s practice encompasses a wide range of fields including financial services, insider dealing, corporate fraud, sexual offences, police and regulatory proceedings and inquests. She brings her knowledge of the law in many fields to bear on complex cases and has a creative approach to problem solving. She is known for her thorough preparation and ability to master complex issues, particularly in cases involving expert evidence. Sarah was shortlisted for the Financial Services and Insurance Silk of the Year Award at The Legal 500 UK Bar Awards 2022.

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Angus Moon KC 1986 | 2006    Joint Head of Chambers
Michael Horne KC 1992 | 2016    Joint Head of Chambers
Adrian Hopkins KC 1984 | 2003
John Beggs KC 1989 | 2009
Michael Mylonas KC 1988 | 2012
Tom Crowther KC 1993 | 2013
John de Bono KC 1995 | 2014
Dijen Basu KC 1994 | 2015
Nageena Khalique KC 1994 | 2015
Katie Gollop KC 1993 | 2016
Simon Fox KC 1994 | 2016
Bridget Dolan KC 1997 | 2016
Gerard Boyle KC 1992 | 2017
Sarah Clarke KC 1994 | 2017
Debra Powell KC 1995 | 2017
Jon Holl-Allen KC 1990 | 2018
Ian Skelt KC 1994 | 2020
Mark Harries KC 1995 | 2019
Sophia Roper KC 1990 | 2022
Claire Watson KC 2001 | 2022
Jemma Lee 2010
Liam Duffy 2012
His Honour Brian Barker CBE KC 1969 | 1990    Associate Member
Sir Robert Francis KC 1973 | 1992    Associate Member
James Watson KC 1979 | 2000    Associate Member
Natalie Cargill 2016    Associate Member
Susan Burden 1985    Door Tenant
Anthony Jackson 1995    Door Tenant
Benedict Wray 2009    Door Tenant