Profile image
Described in Chambers and Partners as “a true intellectual giant – a top-class extradition and appellate lawyer”, a “king of the field” and “a Rolls Royce in the cab-rank of barristers”. Edward Fitzgerald CBE QC is Joint Head of Doughty Street Chambers.

Edward Fitzgerald QC was named Human Rights and Public Law Silk of the Year in the Chambers Bar Awards 2013,   Legal Aid Lawyer of the year in 2009, and Silk of the Year award 2005. In 1998 he was given the Times Justice Human Rights Award. In 2008 he was awarded the CBE for services to human rights. He specialises in criminal law, public law, judicial review and international human rights law.

Edward is ranked 1st in Extradition in Chambers and Partners 2020, as a ‘starred individual’ in the area of Crime in 2020 and in Band 1 in Administrative and Public law. He has been described as “a true intellectual giant – a top-class extradition and appellate lawyer”, a “king of the field” and “a Rolls Royce in the cab-rank of barristers”.

Edward has represented a number of high-profile, public figures including Silvio Berlusconi in the European Court of Human Rights, Boris Berezovsky and Akmed Zakaev of Chechnya and Ejup Ganic of Bosnia in their respective fights against extradition to Russia and Serbia. His recent successful cases have included the ruling of District Judge Baraitser to refuse Julian Assange’s extradition to America on January 4th 2021; and the decisions of the High Court in the case of McDaid (July 2020), and earlier in Lauri Love (2018) to refuse extradition to the US on forum grounds.  He has also recent obtained extradition rulings against the United States in the Cayman Islands in the case of MacKellar (March 2020) and the British Virgin Islands in the case of Harrigan & Hodge (2018) to refuse extradition to the United States.

Edward represented Mrs Elgizouli in her challenge to the Home Secretary in 2020 to ensure that he did not provide mutual assistance in respect of her son to the United States without a death penalty assurance from the US.  In the past, Edward has conducted many successful criminal appeals against miscarriages of justice – and secured a number of important rulings setting aside the mandatory death penalty in the Caribbean and elsewhere.  He also represented the appellants in recent successful criminal appeals from the Caribbean including the Privy Council cases of Stubbs in 2018 and Bain in 2020 from the Bahamas.

In December 2018, Edward represented Olivier Bancoult and the Chagos Islanders in the High Court and before that in the Supreme Court in the well-known case of Bancoult No. 4 in 2016.

In February 2019, Edward successfully represented Chantelle Day and Vickie Bodden Bush in their landmark constitutional motion in front of the Chief Justice to overturn the ban on same-sex marriage in the Cayman Islands.  Although part of the judgment was set aside in the Court of Appeal, a further appeal is pending in the Privy Council. In the meantime Edward has already obtained a declaration that they are entitled to enter into a civil partnership and the law has accordingly been amended in the Cayman Islands in the summer of 2020. 

Recent Cases

During the last year, Edward has been further involved in a number of important, high- profile cases both nationally and internationally.

  • United States of America v Julian Assange [2021] EWHC 3313 (Admin). Edward represented Mr Julian Assange in resisting the appeal by the United States Government against extradition to the US. This followed initial success in the Magistrates Court.

    In these current proceedings, the team, led by Edward, successfully defended the District Judge’s findings on the legal test she applied in determining whether extradition would be oppressive under Section 91 grounds. The Court found that the District Judge had correctly applied the test and that she was right to find extradition oppressive by reason of Mr Assange’s mental health and the impact extradition to the US would have upon him.   
    However, the Court ruled against Mr Assange based on the assurances provided by the United States. These assurances were only provided to the Court after the trial at first instance had concluded. It has been confirmed by Birnberg Pierce & Partners that Mr Assange’s legal team will seek a certificate in order to appeal to the Supreme Court on this part of the case. If a certificate is granted, then there will be an application for leave to appeal from the High Court or the Supreme Court.  In any event, there will be further applications to appeal on the specific points on which the District Judge made adverse findings on in the Magistrates Court, such as points concerning freedom of expression and political motivation.

    Judgment can be found here.

  • The Queen on the application of Paul Cleeland v Criminal Cases Review Commission [2022] EWCA Civ 5. Edward Fitzgerald QC, Richard Thomas and Abigail Bright represented Mr Paul Cleeland in his continuing fight to have his conviction overturned. Mr Cleeland has always maintained his innocence of the crime. While full ruling is still awaited, Edward, Richard and Abigail scored a substantial victory for all convicted people by establishing civil jurisdiction in challenging decisions made by the Criminal Cases Review Commission.

    Edward and his team established an important point of jurisdiction in cases of judicial review of decisions of the CCRC. Both Counsel for the CCRC and the Court agreed with submissions challenging the principle that a JR of a decision of the CCRC is not a ‘criminal cause or matter’. 
    This means that the court has ruled, for the first time, that a convicted person who is turned down by the CCRC can pursue a Judicial Review in civil proceedings and then appeal an adverse decision of the High Court to the Court of Appeal (Civil Division).  Previously it had been held that a Judicial Review of a CCRC decision was a ‘criminal cause or matter’. That meant that for decades the only remedy was to go to the High Court and seek a certificate that the case was on a ‘general point of public importance’ to apply to the Supreme Court. This establishes additional important procedural rights for those seeking redress from adverse CCRC decisions, finally allowing them to refer their case to a higher court, the Court of Appeal (Civil Division)

    Judgment can be found here.

  • Gabriel Popoviciu v Curtea de Apel Bucuresti (Romania) [2021] EWHC 1584 (Admin). Edward successfully represented Mr Gabriel Popoviciu, a high-profile, successful Romanian businessman, in his appeal against extradition to Romania.  Holroyde LJ and Jay J described Mr Popoviciu’s case as “extraordinary”. The Court found that there was credible evidence to show that the trial judge who convicted Mr Popoviciu in Romania - whilst holding judicial office, and over a number of years - corruptly assisted “underworld” businessmen with their legal matters. In particular, the trial judge had provided “improper and corrupt assistance” to the complainant, and chief prosecution witness in Mr Popoviciu’s case, including the soliciting and receiving of bribes.  The trial judge’s failure to disclose his pre-existing corrupt relationship with the complainant - and the Romanian authorities’ failure properly to investigate this link - were of central, damning importance.

    The Court therefore concluded that Mr Popoviciu was not tried by an impartial tribunal and that he had “suffered a complete denial” of his fair trial rights as protected by Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights. The Court further concluded that the serving of a prison sentence based on an improper conviction would be “arbitrary” and that extraditing Mr Popoviciu would consequently represent a “flagrant denial” of his right to liberty as protected by Article 5 of the European Convention. This is the first time that the High Court has concluded that extradition to an EU Member State represents a real risk of a “flagrant denial” of a requested person’s Convention rights.

    Judgment can be found here.

  • Banmeet Singh v United Kingdom Applic. No. 23690/21. Edward has secured urgent interim relief from the European Court of Human Rights under Rule 39 prohibiting the United Kingdom Government from extraditing Mr Singh to the United States. 

    Mr Singh’s extradition is sought by the US authorities in relation to drugs offence conspiracies. If convicted, Mr Singh faces a possible sentence of life without parole.  The UK courts had dismissed Mr Singh’s contention that the US sentence of life without parole was an inhuman and degrading sentence. The UK Courts had concluded that United States’ law provided for the possibility of release, and refused to follow the decision of the European Court in Trabelsi v Belgium to contrary effect.

    The European Court has now issued interim measures staying Mr Singh’s extradition indefinitely until the European Court assesses for itself the correctness of Trabelsi, including whether US law provides an adequate possibility of release from a whole life sentence.

  • Jabbir Siddiq aka Jabbir Motiwala v Government of the United States of America. Edward represented Mr Jabbir Siddiq in his successful appeal to the High Court against extradition.  Jabbir Siddiq was charged with trafficking in drugs.  There was a further allegation made that he was involved in terrorism.  Mr Siddiq always maintained his innocence and claimed that he was the subject of entrapment attempts.  In the High Court his challenge was based, amongst other things, on an allegation of abuse of process and an abuse of power by the United States.  Evidence was adduced of a tape recording in which the Chief Prosecution witness claimed that he had been intimidated and bribed to make a statement against Mr Siddiq.  Shortly after the hearing in the High Court the US Department of Justice applied to dismiss the charges brought against Mr Siddiq in the United States and to concede the appeal.  Mr Siddiq has subsequently been released and has flown back to Pakistan, a free man.

  • Inter-American Commission on Human Rights finding on Jamaica. Edward worked with the Human Dignity Trust, to help win a case before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights against Jamaica.  The decision condemns Jamaica for their laws criminalising intimacy for consenting men.  The judgment requires the authorities to address past harms and to ensure that the persecution of the LGBT community in Jamaica comes to an end.  Jamaica was found to be in violation of international law and urged to repeal homophobic criminal laws.

  • Government of the United States of America v Julian AssangeWestminster Magistrates’ Court decision 4 January 2021. Edward represented Julian Assange in his fight against the US extradition request. Julian Assange was discharged on grounds of his mental health, the risk of suicide and the damaging effects on him of prison conditions in the US. This was a significant victory and the District Judge’s findings on prison conditions in America for those on Special Administrative Measures were particularly important.

  • Bain (Appellant) v The Queen (Respondent) Bahamas [2020] UKPC 10. Edward won an important case on the right of those facing capital punishment to have the right to counsel of their choice. The Privy Council overturned a decision of the Court of Appeal and laid down new guidelines to seek to ensure that Defendants would not go unrepresented in capital cases. They also found the sentence had been fixed in an unfair manner because the Court of Appeal did not afford an opportunity to the Appellant to address them on the length of any fixed term sentence if the life sentence was set aside. Edward worked with the Death Penalty Project, in-house counsel Amanda Clift-Matthews and local counsel Martin Lundy II of Callenders & Co, Bahamas. Saul Lehrfreund of the DPP described it as “a fantastic outcome”. The full judgment from the Privy Council is available here.

  • Hafeez v United Kingdom Application No. 14198/20. In March 2020 Edward obtained a Rule 39 indication from the European Court (effectively staying extradition) in the case of Hafeez. That was on the basis both that he faced a sentence of life without parole in the US and that there was a real risk that conditions in the federal detention centres were inhuman, particularly in the light of the Coronavirus outbreak.

  • Elgizouli v Secretary of State for the Home Department. Supreme Court decision, 20 March 2020. Edward led the team that won the challenge to the Secretary of State’s decision to provide evidence for a capital trial in the United States of the ‘Beatles’. The Supreme Court upheld the challenge on the basis that the provision of evidence would facilitate the imposition of the death penalty. All the Supreme Court Judges ruled in favour of the Appellants. Lord Kerr went further and found that the provision of evidence to facilitate the death penalty was now contrary to the common law itself. At the hearing Edward argued that the ‘Beatles’ should be put on trial in the United Kingdom rather than the United States. The Supreme Court Judges voiced broad support for this proposition but did not decide it as it was the subject of a separate judicial review application.

  • Iain MacKellar v United States of America and HE the Governor of the Cayman Islands. Grand Court of the Cayman Islands decision, 9 March 2020. Edward represented Iain MacKellar in his appeal to the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands against extradition to the United States. Justice Linda Dobbs ruled in favour of the Appellant on the basis that it would be unjust and oppressive to extradite him because of his physical ill health. He was facing trial in the United States on primary charges of trademark infringement and consequentially, further additional charges.

  • Edward also represented Jon Venables in February 2019 and successfully upheld the lifelong anonymity injunction protecting Venables contra mundum.

  • More recently, in the case of RXG (2019), he obtained a similar lifelong anonymity injunction for a prisoner convicted of a terrorist at the age of 14.

Overview of past practice

His most recent cases have been dealt with above but in the past, as a criminal practitioner, Edward has featured in many of the leading cases involving high profile defendants, extradition, appeals against miscarriages of justice, and international law.

Edward’s past clients have included Boris Berezovsky, Akhmed Zakayev (Deputy Prime Minister of Chechnya), Michael Missick (Chief Minister of the Turks and Caicos Islands) and Derek Schofield (Chief Justice of Gibraltar).

Edward has been called to the Bar in numerous jurisdictions including Belize, Grenada and St Vincent and has been granted rights of audience to appear in cases in Gibraltar, Hong Kong, Trinidad and Tobago, St Lucia, Bahamas and the British Virgin Islands.

Edward has extensive experience of jury trials including the defence of the Winchester Three, the Canary Wharf Bomber, Abu Hamza, Chetan Popat, Sara Thornton (in her retrial). He has been involved in a number of high-profile inquests and inquiries.

He frequently appears in the Privy Council in cases involving the constitutions of the Commonwealth Caribbean, death penalty appeals, extradition, and criminal appeals and constitutional challenges, including the cases of R v Reyes, R v Hughes and R v Fox, which struck down the mandatory death penalty in the Eastern Caribbean and Belize.

In the field of public law he has argued many of the leading cases on inquest law, prisoners' rights, mental health law and refugee law. He has appeared before the European Court, House of Lords and Supreme Court in some of the leading prisoner’s rights cases including in the cases of R (on the application of Noye) v Secretary of State for Justice (2017), Nancy Kissel v Secretary of State for Justice (2017) and Venables and Thompson v UK (2000).

Edward’s clients have included Gary McKinnon in his fight against extradition, the Gurkhas in their fight for residence, the Hillsborough victims' families, the family of Derek Bentley in his successful posthumous appeal, and the family of Private Farr in his battle for a posthumous pardon. He represented Janan Harb (former wife of the King of Saudi Arabia), in her claim against the Saudi Royal Family, and has successfully defeated the claim of sovereign immunity in the High Court.

Edward has a wide-ranging practice in international law. He has won many leading cases in the European Court against the United Kingdom, Greece and Spain, including, Abu Qatada v UK, Venables v UK, Steele and Others v UK, Stafford v UK, Scott v Spain and Portington v Greece.

His practice extends to Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia. He successfully led the campaign to save the life of Yong Vi Kong, who had been sentenced to death in Singapore. He conducted the defence of Michael Wong in Hong Kong at first instance and successfully represented him and Shum Chiu in their successive appeals against their convictions in the Hong Kong Court of Appeal. He successfully represented Lai Kan Lai in her appeal to the Hong Kong Court of Appeal. He won the appeal of Sam Tak Leein the Final Court of Appeal on a point of law concerning legal professional privilege. Finally, he represented Nancy Kissel in her review against the Long-Term Prison Sentences Review Board in Hong Kong.

Edward has appeared for the Fortis Energy Inc. at the Caribbean Court of Justice and has appeared for Michael Ashcroft in the Belize Court of Appeal and the Caribbean Court of Justice. He represented Steve Ferguson in the Trinidadian Court of Appeal in a case vindicating the appellant’s right to be tried in Trinidad rather than extradited to the US and appeared for the Grenada 17 in the case of R v Coard and Others, both in the Privy Council and on their re-sentencing in Grenada.  He also argued the case of R v Bowe and Davis in the Bahamian Court of Appeal and the Privy Council, which led to the end of the mandatory death penalty in the Bahamas.

In Youssef & N2 v SSHD, Edward and Alasdair Mackenzie represented Mr Youssef, an Egyptian former lawyer at risk of torture there on account of his political views. The Upper Tribunal had found that he was excluded from protection under Article 1F(c) of the Refugee Convention, because of his sermons and other published materials which were said to have praised Al Qaeda and its leaders and to have encouraged others to emulate them. In this case, the court held that the Tribunal had not properly addressed itself to the gravity or seriousness of Mr Youssef's individual conduct, including questions such as the reach and the audience of his published material. It therefore allowed the appeal, remitting it to the Tribunal to be reconsidered.

In December 2015, Edward successfully defeated the Rwandan government’s request for extradition against the alleged genocidaire, Celestin Ugirashebuja on Article 6 grounds. The appeal by the government to the High Court was heard in December 2016.

In July 2016, in the case of Marku v Nafplion; Murphy v Public Prosecutor’s Office, Edward won the appeal of two defendants against the extradition to Greece on the grounds that prison conditions were inhuman. This has effectively put extradition to Greece on hold. In July 2016, Edward represented Shavargo McPhee in the Privy Council in a successful appeal against conviction on the grounds that he was subjected to prolonged periods of questioning without any legal advice or presence of a suitable adult and unexplained extended periods of time outside of his cell, rendering the confession unreliable.

In January 2018, Edward appeared in a ‘revenge porn’ case in Belfast in which naked photos of a minor were being shared on Facebook. The case settled on confidential terms with an order that Facebook pay the plaintiff’s costs.

In early 2018, Edward represented Peter Morgan in the Court of Appeal on the appeal of his life sentence for murder on the basis that the court adopted the incorrect starting point in determining the minimum term of his sentence.

Edward has given many lectures and seminars throughout the world, including Hungary, Poland, Russia, France, Hong Kong, Barbados and Belize. He is the author with Keir Starmer QC of “A Guide To Sentencing In Capital Cases”. He is also author of the chapter on sentencing in “Taylor on Appeals”. He was awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of Law in 2013, and is an Honorary Fellow of Corpus Christi College, Oxford.

Please contact Matthew Butchard ( from our practice management team or email for further details. 

Criminal Appeals

Edward Fitzgerald QC has a specialist practice in criminal appeals. He has appeared in a number of high-profile jury trials, including R v Sara Thornton, R v Popat, R v Abu Hamza and the “milkshake murder” case of HKSAR v Nancy Kissel in Hong Kong; and in a number of cases involving guilty pleas and mitigation such as R v Venables.

At the Appellant level he has been involved in numerous important and difficult cases involving miscarriages of justice, issues of provocation and diminished responsibility (such as R v Sara Thornton), and difficult or complex points of law in the Court of Appeal, the House of Lords and the Supreme Court.

These include:

  • R v Cleland [2020] EWCA Crim 906
  • Bain [2020] UKPC 10
  • Stubbs [2018] UKPC 30
  • Maharaj (and others) v The State [2018] C.A. Crim. 56-65/2001
  • Lester Pitman & Neil Hernandez v The State [2017] UKPC 6
  • Shavargo McPhee (Appellant) v The Queen (Respondent) (Bahamas) [2016] UKPC 29
  • R v Erskine [2010] 1 WLR 183
  • R v Coutts [2006] 1WLR 3154
  • The Michael Stone appeal [2005] EWCA Crim 105
  • The Bridgewater Three appeal
  • The Derek Bentley appeal [2001] 1 Cr.App.R. 21
  • R v Cullen and Shanahan (The Winchester Three appeal) [1991] 92 Cr.App. R. 239
  • R v Sara Thornton [1993] 96 Cr.App. R. 112

Privy Council Appeals

Edward has a special expertise in Privy Council appeals and has argued many of the leading appeals from Commonwealth Caribbean including a series of breakthrough cases involving the death penalty.

His criminal appeal cases before the Privy Council include:

  • Bain v The Queen [2020] UKPC 10
  • Stubbs [2018] UKPC 30
  • Lendore [2017] UKPC 25
  • Shavargo McPhee (Appellant) v The Queen (Respondent) (Bahamas) [2016] UKPC 29
  • Lester Pitman & Neil Hernandez v The State [2016] UKPC 29
  • Ramdeen v The State [2014] 3 WLR 1523
  • Hamilton and Lewis v The Queen [2012] UKPC 31
  • R v Trimmingham [2009] UKPC 25
  • R v Pippesbourgh and Robateau [2008] UKPC 11
  • Matthew [2005] 1 AC 433
  • Stubbs [2005] UKPC 2522
  • R v Benedetto and Labrador [2003] 1 WLR 1545
  • R v Matthew [2005] 1 AC 433
  • Reyes v The Queen [2002] 2 AC 235
  • R v Greene Browne [2000] 1 AC 45
  • State v Sankar [1995] 1 WLR 194

Sentencing Appeals

Edward Fitzgerald has a special expertise in sentencing appeals and has conducted many of the leading sentencing appeals before the English Court of Appeal and the Privy Council. These cases include some of the leading cases on discretionary life sentences, sentences of imprisonment for public protection and guideline cases involving minimum periods for mandatory lifers, drug importation and sexual offences.  He has also appeared recently in the sentencing appeal of Bain (2020) in the Privy Council; the successful sentencing appeals in Stubbs No. 2 in the Privy Council (2020); and represented the Appellant Cleland in the English Court of Appeal in the case of R v Cleland [2020] EWCA Crim 906.

Some of the important sentencing cases he has argued are:

  • R v Coonan [2011] EWCA Crim 5
  • R v Erskine [2010] 1 WLR 183
  • R v Orobator [2010] EWHC 58 (Admin)
  • R v Pedley and Martin [2009] 1WLR 2517. On the level of risk required to justify a sentence of imprisonment for public protection.
  • R v Pyrah and Lichniak [2003] 1 AC 903
  • R v Offen [2001] 1 WLR 253
  • R v Mitchell [1997] 1 Cr.App.R. (S) 90.
  • R v Richardson [1994] 15 Cr.App. R. (S) 876.

Mitigation cases

Edward Fitzgerald has extensive experience in sentencing at first instance. He has presented the mitigation in a number difficult and sensitive cases. These include:

  • R v Venables [2012] EWCA Crim 1653, in England
  • R v Reyes [2002] 2 AC 235, a death penalty case in Belize
  • R v Fox [2002] in the High Court of St. Kitts, (a death penalty case in St. Kitts)
  • R v Cannonier [2015] in the Court of Appeal of St. Kitts (a death penalty case in St. Kitts)

Edward Fitzgerald has been a leading extradition practitioner for the last thirty years. He is ranked 1st in Extradition in Chambers and Partners and has been described as “a true intellectual giant – a top-class extradition and appellate lawyer”.

He recently represented Julian Assange in his successful challenge to extradition to the United States before District Judge Baraitser who discharged Mr Assange on 4 January 2021.  This follows on from earlier successful challenges to extradition to the United States in the case of McDaid in July 2020, the case of Hodge and Harrigan in the British Virgin Islands in June 2018 and the case of Lauri Love in 2018.

In the past he has represented many high-profile defendants in successful extradition battles. These include Mr Akmed Zakayev in his contest of extradition to Russia; Boris Berezovsky; Stanley Tollman; Lotfi Raissi; Roisin McAliskey; Ejup Ganic and Gary McKinnon. He has won numerous extradition cases against the United States, in the UK (such as Lauri Love), Trinidad and the British Virgin Islands (such as Hodge and Harrigan). Edward is currently involved in the key Romanian extradition case of Gabriel Popoviciu.

He has also successfully acted for numerous Russian defendants, and particularly a number of defendants involved in the Yukos cases. Moreover, he has been at the forefront of the development of human rights challenges to extradition including a number of recent Supreme Court cases involving Article 6 (1); Article 5 (4) in Pomiechowski and Lukaszewski v Poland; and in the case of F-K v Poland establishing new protections under Article 8 for mothers and children facing separation as a result of extradition.

Some of his leading cases in the field of extradition include:

Marku v Nafplion Court of Appeal Greece and Murphy v Public Prosecutor’s Office to the Athens Court [2016] EWHC 1801 (Admin). Edward represented two appellants in an important extradition case against the Greek government. The court held that the extradition could not take place because of the dangerous conditions in Korydallos Men’s Prison and Nafplio Prison. This is an important decision because it is based on the risk of inter-prisoner violence and in that respect brings a new dimension to the directive of Article 3. This halted all extraditions to Greece.

Harkins v UK, Application no. 71537/14. Edward represented Philip Harkins in the Grand Chamber in January 2017 in challenging the decision ordering the Claimant’s extradition to USA where on conviction he would serve a sentence of life without parole (‘LWOP’). The Claimant contended that Florida’s system of LWOP violates Article 3 and that extradition to face it was therefore prohibited by the ECHR.

Gary McKinnon. Edward Fitzgerald represented Gary McKinnon over many years in his judicial review proceedings and drafted the representations to the Secretary of State which resulted in her withdrawing the order for extradition.

Poland v F-K [2013] 1 A.C. 338. This was a successful challenge to the decision to extradite Mrs F-K. It was a historic win and is one of the very few cases in which extradition has been halted on Article 8 grounds.

Poland v Lukaszewski and Pomiechowski [2012] 1 W.L.R. 1604. This was a Supreme Court case dealing with Article 8 issues. Edward successfully represented the Appellants in a decision which established the new approach to time limits for appeal in extradition cases. It was held that the appellants had complied with the time limits by faxing the front sheet of their application to the CPS.

USA v Ferguson CV2010- 04144. This was a successful challenge to the decision to extradite Mr Ferguson to face trial on charges of conspiracy to defraud. The judge accepted Mr Fitzgerald's arguments that the Forum Conveniens for the trial of Mr Ferguson was Trinidad, not the US.

Fuller v A-G of Belize [2011] UKPC 23. One of the last appeals to the Privy Council from Belize, this case vindicated the right of persons sought for extradition to argue abuse of process in the courts.

Serbia v Ganic, DJ Workman, 27th July 2010. This was an extradition case of a former member of the Bosnian presidency, who successfully contested their extradition to Serbia.

Rwanda v Ugirashebuja and Ors [2009] EWHC 770 (Admin). The successful appeal of Mr Ugirashebuja who was wanted in Rwanda for genocide. In 2017, Edward represented Celestin Ugirashebuja in revisiting the Rwandan government’s appeal to the High Court to secure extradition of the men. The case had centred around the political regime in Rwanda, the provisions of Rwanda's Transfer Law, and the ability of the Rwandan criminal justice system to provide fair trial rights in genocide cases. The government’s appeal was quashed.

United States of America v Stanley Tollman [2008] EWHC 184 (Admin). This was a successful ruling against the extradition of Stanley Tollman on grounds of oppression before the District Judge following the remittal of the case from the High Court.

Federal Republic of Germany v Roisin McAliskey Recorder of Belfast, 27th November 2007. The successful appeal against extradition to Germany on terrorist charges of Roisin McAliskey, the daughter of Bernadette McAliskey.

R (On behalf of Lotfi Raissi) v SSHD [2008] EWCA Civ 72. This was a successful challenge to the Secretary of State's decision to refuse compensation to Lotfi Raissi, the Algerian pilot wrongly accused of participation in 9/11 plot and sought by the United States of America for extradition.

Russian Federation v Chernysheva and Maruev, DJ Workman, 18th March 2005;

Russian Federation v Temerko, DJ Workman, 23rd December 2005. In this series of cases, Edward successfully represented a number of defendants sought by the Russian Federation for their alleged involvement in the crimes of the Yukos company.

Russian Federation v Izmaylov, DJ Workman, 22nd December 2008. Edward also successfully represented Mr Izmaylov in his fight against extradition to Russia.

Administrative and Public Law

Edward Fitzgerald QC was named Human Rights and Public Law Silk of the year 2013. He has life long experience in a wide-ranging number of Public Law fields. He has particular expertise in areas of Public Law relating to the criminal justice system and prisoners’ rights; asylum and deportation; mental health; coroners’ law; and the review of the decisions of the disciplinary bodies - including the GMC and public service bodies in Commonwealth jurisdictions.

Recent Cases

Some of Edward’s recent notable cases in public law include:

Maha Elgizouli v the Secretary of State for the Home Department. Edward represented the mother of one of the “IS Beatles” in her appeal to the Supreme Court arising out of the Home Secretary’s decision not to seek death penalty assurances from the United States for her son before providing evidence against him gathered by the British Police.  On 25 March 2020 the Supreme Court ruled in her favour.  As a result, the US Government was obliged to provide death penalty assurances before Mutual Assistance was provided.

R (Bancoult) v Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs.  On 16 November 2016 the UK Government announced that it would not fund any supported resettlement of the Chagos Islands. On 16 February 2017 Olivier Bancoult, the Chair of the Chagos Refugees Group, issued an application for judicial review of both decisions. This fresh judicial review revisited the legality of the statutory barriers to the exercise of the constitutional right of abode by the Chagossians removed from their homeland by the United Kingdom Government. Edward Fitzgerald QC appeared for Louis Olivier Bancoult.

Day and Bush v The Attorney General of the Cayman Islands JCPC [2020] 0033. A constitutional and pubic law challenge to the refusal of the Cayman Islands Government to recognise the right of same sex couples either to marry or to enter into civil partnerships. The Court of Appeal reversed the Chief Justice’s decision to modify the marriage law to provide a right of same sex couples to marry but upheld the right of same sex couples to enter into civil partnerships and instructed the Government to introduce legislation forthwith.  A civil partnership law has now been introduced; Edward Fitzgerald QC who represented Chantelle Day and Vickie Bodden Bush in the Courts below is due to appear before the Privy Council in an appeal on the issue of same sex marriage before the Privy Council in February 2021.

D&F v Persons Unknown [2020].  Edward represented the Claimants at the hearing in October 2020 designed to obtain lifelong anonymity orders against the media for the two claimants who had been convicted of murder as juveniles - on grounds of their rights under Articles 2,3 and 8 of the European Convention.

The Commissioner of the Independent Commission of Investigations v The Police Federation (1) Merrick Watson (2) The Special Constabulary Force Association (3) Delroy Davis (4) [2020]. Edward represented INDECOM in their appeal to the Privy Council to establish that they have a separate and independent right to prosecute police involved in serious misconduct.  The full court in Jamaica had found for INDECOM on this issue, but the Jamaican Court of Appeal had subsequently reversed their decision.  The Privy Council rejected the appeal but made relevant findings in favour of INDECOM.

Other Past Cases

Al-Sirri v SSHD [2012] 3 WLR 1263. In this case the Supreme Court ruled that individuals accused of involvement in acts contrary to the purposes and principles of the UN were disqualified from refugee status only if it could be shown that there were serious reasons for considering that actions for which they were responsible had a serious effect on international peace and security.

R (on the application of Gujra) v CPS [2012] 3 WLR 1227. This case involved a challenge to the policy of the DPP to take over and discontinue any private prosecution where he would not himself have initiated a prosecution. The Supreme Court ruled against the Appellant by three votes to two and upheld the DPP’s policy.

Othman v SSHD [2013] EWCA Civ 277. The successful challenge of Mr Othman to the decision of the Home Secretary, Theresa May, to order his deportation to Jordan. SIAC announced its decision on 12th November 2012. The decision was upheld by the Court of Appeal.

Ashcroft and Others v Attorney General of Belize [2014] CCJ 2 (AJ). This case involved a successful challenge to the constitutionality of legislation passed by the Belize government that targeted Mr Ashcroft and his companies and sought to mandate disproportionate penalties if they sought international arbitration in breach of anti-arbitration injunctions imposed by Belize courts. The Court of Appeal ruled that the legislation was unconstitutional and violated the principle of separation of powers.

Nancy Kissel v Secretary of Justice, HKSAR [2017]. Edward represented the ‘milkshake murderess’ in her judicial review against the Long-Term Prison Sentences Review Board in Hong Kong. The Applicant sought to establish that the right of life sentence prisoners to be informed of a finite ‘tariff’ period. At present there is Appellate authority in Hong Kong against that proposition.

R (Noye) v The Secretary of State for Justice [2017] EWHC 267 (Admin). This was a successful judicial review challenge to the Home Secretary’s refusal to move Kenneth Noye to an open prison despite a positive recommendation by the parole board.

International Law and Foreign Jurisdictions

Edward Fitzgerald has an extensive International Law practice, involving public international law and international human rights law. He has represented the Belize government in its case against Guatemala; and advised governments of Kazakhstan, Ecuador and Qatar on matters of international law and human rights law. He has challenged governmental decisions in numerous cases before the European Court of Human Rights, the United Nations Human Rights Committee, the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights and the African Commission of Human Rights. He has also appeared for individuals challenging conduct of states in the European Court of Human Rights, the Privy Council and the domestic courts of the Eastern Caribbean, Belize, Bahamas and Trinidad.

Edward is currently acting for the former President of Armenia, Robert Kocharyan.

He has also represented the applicants Mitchell and Jones in the case of Jones and Others v Saudi Arabia in the House of Lords and conducted their appeal to the European Court of Human Rights.

Edward's international cases in the Caribbean and elsewhere have included:

  • Day and Bush v Governor of the Cayman Islands – Gay marriage case. Ongoing.
  • Ewart Layne v Attorney General of Grenada
  • R (on the application of Bancoult (No 2)) v Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs [2016] UKSC 35
  • Government of Rwanda v Celestin Ugirashebuja & others

Cases before the European Court have included:-

  • Hafeez v UK ongoing
  • Harkins No. 2 v UK [ 2017]
  • Abu Qatada v UK [2012] 55 EHRR 1
  • Venables and Thompson v UK [2000] EHRR 12
  • Stafford v UK [2002] 35 EHRR 32
  • Johnson v UK [1999] 27 EHRR 296
  • Singh & Hussain v UK [1996] 22 EHRR 1
  • Scott v Spain [1997] 24 EHRR 391
  • Portington v Greece App. No. 28523/95
  • Steel and Others v UK [1999] 28 EHRR 603
  • Mangouras v Spain [2012] 54 EHRR 25
  • A-G of Belize v Zuniga and Others – Civil appeal Nos 7, 9 and 10 of 2011 in Belize Court of Appeal
  • Young Vui Kong v DPP
Prison Law and Crime Related Public Law

Edward has thirty years of experience in the field of prisoners’ rights. Since the 1980s he has argued many of the landmark cases in the House of Lords and the Court of Appeal which established prisoners’ rights of access to the courts; access to lawyers and access to journalists. He also argued the leading cases that established the right to judicial review of disciplinary adjudications, including the case of ex parte Leach. Finally, he has taken many of the leading cases that established the rights of prisoners to parole review, and to fairness at parole reviews.

Edward's cases have included:

  • R. (on the application of Noye) v Secretary of State for Justice [2017] EWHC 267 (Admin) – this was a successful challenge to a refusal to move to an open prison.
  • Nancy Kissel v Secretary of Justice, HKSAR [2017]
  • R. (on the application of Harkins) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2014] EWHC 3609 (Admin) – this was a challenge to extradition to face life without parole.
  • ex parte Smith [2006] 1 AC 159
  • Benjamin and Wilson v UK [2003] 36 EHRR 1
  • SSHD ex p Anderson [2003] AC 837
  • Stafford v UK [2002] 35 EHRR 32
  • ex parte Hindley [2001] 1 AC 410
  • Venables and Thompson v UK [2000] EHRR 121
  • Johnson v UK [1999] 27 EHRR 296
  • ex parte Pierson [1998] AC 539
  • ex parte Venables and Thompson [1998] AC
  • Singh & Hussain v UK [1996] 22 EHRR 1
  • ex parte Leech [1994] QB 201
  • ex parte Wilson [1992] QB 740
  • Thynne, Gunnel and Wilson v UK [1991] 13 EHRR 666 
  • ex parte Findlay [1985] AC 318
Professional Discipline and Regulation

Edward Fitzgerald QC has wide experience in representing professionals in disciplinary proceedings. He has frequently represented doctors before the GMC, pharmacists before the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, and lawyers before the Bar Disciplinary Committee and the Legal Executive Appeals Tribunal.

He has appeared for judges and public servants in constitutional proceedings in the Caribbean and Gibraltar, including the Chief Justice of Gibraltar, the Director of Audit in Grenada and he has taken a number of challenges to dismissal of public servants in constitutional appeals from Trinidad in the Privy Council.

In the field of sports he has successfully represented the Olympic Athlete Arthur Lanegan O’Keefe and the Irish Pentathlon Association before the Court of Arbitration for sport to vindicate his selection for the 2012 Olympic Games; and has represented Willy Mullens before the Appeals Board of the Jockey Club in England.

In 2018, Edward successfully represented Timothy Brenan before the British Horseracing Authority. Brennan, a self-employed vet, was alleged to have passed insider information about a horse he had been working with to his brother. The decision was important in establishing the limits of the British Horseracing Authority.

His cases include:

  • Henry Gow before the Bar Disciplinary Tribunal in July 2013
  • Colman v GMC [2010] EWHC 1608 (QB)
  • GMC v Quinn [2010]; NT v GMC [2013]
  • The case of Chief Justice Schofield from Gibraltar in 2008
  • Lawrence v AG for Grenada [2007] UKPC 18
  • Jhagroo v Teaching Service Commission Privy Council (Trinidad and Tobago) 4/12/2002
  • Mullens v Appeals Board of Jockey Club