Caoilfhionn Gallagher to be appointed Queen’s Counsel


Doughty Street Chambers is thrilled and proud to announce that Caoilfhionn Gallagher will be appointed Queen’s Counsel in a ceremony at Westminster Hall on 13 February 2017, when the Lord Chancellor will present Caoilfhionn’s Letters Patent from Her Majesty The Queen.


Called in 2001, Caoilfhionn specialises in public law, human rights, inquests and inquiries, and media law.  The Chambers and Partners guide, which ranks her as a leader in five different areas of law, has sources who comment that she is “absolutely superb and incredibly fluent”, “incredibly bright, intelligent and very good at tactics.  Her writing is superb...totally easy to work with” and “she puts everything into a case for her clients”.  We respectfully agree!


Caoilfhionn has acted in landmark human rights cases which have changed the law, including HH v. Italy [2013] 1 AC 338 (children's rights when their parents face extradition); R (HC) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2014] 1 WLR 1234 (test case on treatment of 17-year-olds in police custody as adults rather than children; it has resulted in 70,000 17-year-olds in custody every year being entitled to additional safeguards); and R (Hurley and Others) v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions [2016] PTSR 636 (held that the ‘benefit cap’ discriminates against severely disabled people and their carers). 


Much of her work is high profile & sensitive, often raising national security issues – for example, acting for bereaved families in the 7/7 London Bombings inquests & the Hillsborough inquests and civil claims; and acting for national media organisations in the Gareth Williams, Alexander Litvinenko and Jordan Lee Begley inquests, & various proceedings concerning the unexplained death of baby Poppi Worthington.  She also acts for individuals whose lives are at risk from vigilantes or other groups, where difficult Article 2 ECHR issues arise concerning police protection (this includes, for example, Learco Chindamo, convicted of a high profile murder as a child; and a released life sentence prisoner, convicted of a grave terrorist offence in the 1970s, who now has a new identity).  She currrently acts for victims of child sexual exploitation in Rotherham, addressing complex issues of inter-agency failures by police & children’s services.  Caoilfhionn’s recent cases have also included many international cases, before the European Court of Human Rights and the UN Special Procedures, acting for individuals and NGOs.


Caoilfhionn will join our market leading team of 34 Silks who practise across all areas of public and administrative law, crime, civil and international law, often in cases invoking issues of human rights and civil liberties. 


For more information on Caoilfhionn’s work, please call her clerk Richard Bayliss on 020 7400 9702 or send an e-mail.   


A list of all those appointed Queen's Counsel can be found here.

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