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Police Law

Civil Actions Against the Police

Matrix has a strong team of silks and juniors with expertise in all areas of police law. Their work includes:

  • Public law challenges to police decisions at all levels, from the Administrative Court to the Supreme Court and the European Court of Human Rights.
  • Damages claims arising out of police misconduct: this includes claims for malicious prosecution, false imprisonment, assault, negligence, and misfeasance in public office, as well as for breaches of the Human Rights Act (see also our Human Rights page).
  • Judicial review and damages claims arising out of criminal investigations and prosecutions: for example, challenges to search warrants obtained by the police and other law enforcement bodies.
  • Police law issues arising in other tribunals, such as the Employment Tribunal and the Investigatory Powers Tribunal.

Matrix members have expertise in the full range of police law and related areas, including:

  • Challenges to charging and cautioning decisions, and to failures to prosecute in cases involving Articles 2 and 3 of the ECHR.
  • The use of police powers in the counter-terrorism context.
  • Privacy rights in connection with State surveillance and the retention and disclosure of personal data, including disclosure by way of criminal record certificates.
  • Deaths in custody and following police contact (see also our Inquests and Inquiries page).
  • Discrimination (see also our Discrimination page).
  • Damages claims arising out of the actions of undercover police officers.

Matrix members have acted in many of the most significant recent police law cases, including:

  • David Miranda’s judicial review claim regarding the seizure, under anti-terrorism powers, of journalistic material connected with Edward Snowden.
  • The Supreme Court case brought by John Catt, the 90 year-old peace protester who discovered that his personal details were stored on the Metropolitan Police ‘domestic extremism’ database.
  • The proceedings arising out of the death of Mark Duggan.
  • The Investigatory Powers Tribunal case brought by Liberty and other NGOs against the UK’s use of surveillance.
  • The challenge to the mass arrests on the day of the Royal Wedding; now pending in the Supreme Court.

Our publications include:

  • Civil Actions Against the Police (Sweet & Maxwell)
  • Human Rights and Criminal Justice (Sweet & Maxwell)
  • Prison Law (OUP).


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Nick Armstrong
Called: 2001 Solicitor: 1998
Joanna Buckley
Called: 2011
Michelle Butler
Called: 2007 Solicitor: 2002
Ayesha Christie
Called: 2014
Edward Craven
Called: 2007
Anita Davies
Called: 2011
Raj Desai
Called: 2010 Solicitor: 2007
Emma Foubister
Called: 2016
Danny Friedman QC
Called: 1996 Silk: 2013 Called: 2001 (Northern Ireland)
Jonathan Glasson QC
Called: 1996 Silk: 2013
Richard Hermer QC
Called: 1993 Silk 2009
Darryl Hutcheon
Called: 2014
Phillippa Kaufmann QC
Called: 1991 Silk: 2011
Samantha Knights QC
Called: 1996 Silk: 2018
James Laddie QC
Called: 1995 Silk: 2012
Helen Law
Called: 2005
Lord Ken Macdonald QC
Called: 1978 Silk: 1997
Karon Monaghan QC
Called: 1989 Silk: 2008
Blinne Ní Ghrálaigh
Called: 2005 (England and Wales); 2013 (Northern Ireland); 2017 (Ireland)
Tim Owen QC
Called: 1983 Silk: 2000
Mathew Purchase QC
Called: 2002 Silk: 2021
Matthew Ryder QC
Called: 1992 Silk: 2010
Lorna Skinner QC
Called: 1997 Silk: 2021
Hugh Southey QC
Called: 1996 Silk: 2010 Called: 2010 (Northern Ireland)
Dan Squires QC
Called: 1998 Silk: 2016
Hugh Tomlinson QC
Called: 1983 Silk: 2002
Aidan Wills
Called: 2015