Protest and Public Order
25 Bedford Row are renowned criminal defence specialists. As such, we are committed to protecting the fundamental right to protest. Our experienced barristers have represented a wide range of campaigners from committed (career) activists to first time demonstrators, for several decades. Our collective experience allows us to provide protestors with the best advice and advocacy to achieve excellent outcomes.
Our protest law specialists have been involved in all the key demonstrations across the UK including (but not limited to) Occupy St Paul’s, and more recently, the anti- fracking (“Frack-off”), climate change (“Extinction Rebellion”), Anti-arms fairs (“Anti DSIE”) anti -racism and equality (“BLM”) and various protests against the government in relation to war, austerity and Brexit.
Members of 25 Bedford Row are committed to protecting the rights of each protestor. Our barristers can provide advice and representation at each and every stage of a public order/protest prosecution. Our combined expertise, across all areas of criminal law, enable us to provide exceptional advice in the following areas:
- Actions against the police
- Aggravated trespass
- Criminal damage
- Public order offences
- Breach of the peace
- Obstruction of the highway
- Harassment and intimidation
- European Convention on Human Rights
25 Bedford Row tirelessly work to secure the best outcome for clients. We are esteemed heavyweight defence specialists. We have the benefit of drawing upon decades of collective experience allowing us to provide the very best advice and representation at every stage of a criminal prosecution. Our specialist protest law barristers will carefully assess your case to provide you with the best possible defence strategy.
Why choose 25 Bedford Row for cases concerning protest law and public order offences?
We are the only barristers chambers devoted exclusively to defending criminal prosecutions. This means, each and every barrister has carved and dedicated their practice and careers to defence work, only. Our niche allows us to call ourselves experts in criminal defence law.
Our collective criminal expertise spans across all areas of criminal law, including human rights, protest law, inquests and public enquiries, environmental law, regulatory law, extradition and serious criminal offences.
Our work has taken us across the criminal courts and the civil courts, including the High Court, Court of Appeal, Supreme Court and the European Court of Human Rights.
Our criminal defence barristers provide the highest quality of advice and representation to clients facing the most serious and challenging charges. Our barristers are regularly featured in UK tabloids, including the Times and the BBC. Most recently, barristers Abimbola Johnson and Leon Lynch were featured on the Channel 4 and BBC News in relation to the BLM protests. We are considered as thought leaders in our field.
Regardless of your situation, we are committed to ensuring you have the best possible defence. We are proud to work with exceptional protest law solicitors, with outstanding client care, to ensure the conduct of your case and defence is seamless. .
In addition to representing you in court our barristers will advise on the investigation process (pre-charge) and where necessary challenge police powers to ensure they are compliant with ECHR rights and no fundamental freedoms have been violated.
Why do I need a barrister? Can’t I just use a solicitor?
Barristers are engaged by both solicitors and individual clients to provide specialist advice on the law and evidence, to draft legal documents, and fundamentally, to appear in Court, present cases in front of juries and achieve the best outcomes for their clients during court room appearances.
Solicitors can provide advocacy services to their clients, although many clients prefer to instruct a barrister to do this because barristers are specialist advocates and therefore experts in the presentation of cases in court.
Clients are entitled to ask their solicitor to instruct the barrister of their choice, whether the case is privately funded or publicly funded through Criminal Legal Aid.
What is the process of instructing a criminal barrister?
Barristers are most often instructed through a solicitor. 25 Bedford Row have a strong working relationship with solicitors and together can identify the most suitably experienced barrister to deal with your case. If a client has a specific expert barrister in mind, they may ask their solicitor to make an enquiry to instruct that barrister.
Your barrister will consider the details of your case and can advise you either in writing and/or in consultation, of the best strategy going forward, prior to you going to court. Barristers at 25 Bedford Row also accept instructions directly from members of the public under the Direct Access Scheme.
What is the Direct Access Scheme?
Members of the public seeking advice or representation in this area can now approach a specialist defence barrister directly without the need to have first engaged the services of a solicitor.
If you wish to instruct a criminal barrister directly without a solicitor, you can do so by getting in touch with our clerks. A clerk will advise on which member of chambers would be suitable for your case. From there you will work directly with a specialist protest law barrister.
To instruct our barristers directly, please contact us with details of your case and your requirements. Our experienced clerks will advise on which of our criminal defence barristers may be suitable and the likely cost involved.
Can I use the Direct Access Scheme for protest and public order offences?
It may be possible for you to instruct one of our barristers specialising in protest law and public order cases directly.
Contact us via our clerks’ room to find out whether or not your case is suitable for the Direct Access Scheme.
Is it possible to get legal aid for representation by a criminal barrister using the Direct Access Scheme?
Legal aid is not available for Direct Access clients. However, our barristers do accept legal aid instructions via solicitors. If you do wish to be represented by a defence specialist barrister from 25 Bedford Row, you may request that your solicitor instruct the barrister of your choice.