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Posts tagged ‘Appeal’

Zoo keeper acquitted by Court of Appeal

This has been a very traumatic time for Ms Westlake and her family both the events leading up to and following her wrongful conviction for assault by beating Ms Kate Sanders

Following trial the bench found as a fact that there was no deliberate assault upon Ms Sanders and Ms Westlake was convicted on the basis of recklessness in that she failed to foresee a risk of harm to Ms Sanders by virtue of holding a glass in her hand in close proximity to Ms Sanders during the course of a verbal altercation

Ms Westlake legal team considered that the justices were wrong in their application of the legal test of recklessness and the appeal was brought on that basis

The court today have confirmed the error in the lower court and accordingly have quashed ms west lakes conviction

Ms Westlake life has been destroyed by something that was no more than unfortunate accident in particular Ms Westlake was unfairly dismissed from her position as zoo keeper at ZSL London zoo and has suffered significant ps biological harm arising from Ms Sanders attack upon her which has been exacerbated by these proceedings

Ms Westlake would like thank those that sent messages of support to her which have been a source of strength and encouragement for her and also expresses her thanks to her excellent legal team for their diligence and perseverance in obtaining justice for her

Justice has now been served and Ms Westlake would now appreciate the opportunity to put  this matter behind her and rebuild her life

Interview with Damian Norris

Tell us about yourself

As at  1st November this year I have been a solicitor for twenty years. I qualified later than most having done a variety of things after my Law Degree at Southampton (1980 – 1983)  including advertising copywriter, worked in the City for a year  or so in the heady mid 80’s, graphic design, petrol pump monkey, painter and decorator on building sites, gardener and a host of other long-forgotten best forgotten fill-in jobs. Accidentally started doing family law and felt at home in the hurly burly world of the family courts. I quickly learnt to pick up a case and run with it and ended up doing Care work which strikes me as one of the most worthwhile ways of earning a living I can think of. I love the people involved – the great and the good as well as the mad and bad! I like the fact that the other lawyers in Care – even we disagree completely with each other – are usually able to work together for the good of the children involved. There is a good deal of respect for the other lawyers because they are doing a hard job in difficult circumstances but we do try and do our best. Sometimes we even succeed.

What drew you to the law?

I loved history and the people I respected at the time, Thomas Moore, Erasmus (that lot) were often lawyers (as were the artists Cezanne and Sisley). On the very first day at University, my tutor said to me: “I know why you’re doing law. For the money!”  I didn’t realise that. Not sure how true that is even now!

What do you offer clients?

Straight talking and absolute commitment to do my best for my client.

What do you do when you are not working?

I have three great children so that takes up most of the time. Otherwise I read if I can and paint portraits. I have painted all my life.

Can you sum yourself up in 5 words?     

No. I’m far too vain.

                                                                              

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June Venters QC Top Ranked in Chambers UK 2016

Chambers 2016

Interview with Alex Forbes

Tell us about yourself                                                                          350_39126701521_8325_n

I joined Venters in July 2012 having trained and worked at two leading criminal firms in London.

I also spent some time working as a consultant for an international city firm prior to joining the firm.

I head up the criminal department at Venters and I specialise in business crime, regulatory enforcement & compliance and serious & general crime.  I defend prosecutions brought by the Serious Fraud Office, Crown Prosecution Service and HM Revenue & Customs.

I advise post conviction/sentence on potential grounds and merits of appeal. I also provide advice and assistance to witnesses who have been asked to provide a statement or have received a request to attend court to give evidence.

I provide specialist police station advice as well as advice to clients in relation to interviews conducted by other prosecution agencies. I have a wealth of experience and success in making representations to the CPS, or relevant prosecuting agency, that charges should not be brought.

I run a pro bono free criminal advice clinic at Venters for individuals to “pop in” with any criminal law issue.

What drew you to law?

I think I can say with certainty that I lead with my heart rather than my head. To me, law has always been about criminal defence, evidence, court & police station procedures and helping those facing the worse types of allegations.  I have had experience of both criminal legal aid and privately funded criminal cases and have realized that criminal law should only be undertaken by those with a passion for it.

This is one of the reasons we started the free advice clinic – to enable individuals to still get excellent criminal legal advice and access to justice on the high street.

What do you offer clients?

I can offer clients over 10 years experience in the criminal law field. I have dealt with most criminal offences from murder, manslaughter, sexual offences, drug trafficking, harassment, firearms, various degrees of assault to motoring offences.

I respect the definition of “client care” and I leave no stone unturned for my clients. I consider individual strategies for each case I deal with and I don’t simply follow a set path. Rather, I take every client’s personal circumstances into account and I am always looking two steps ahead.

What do you do when you are not lawyering?

I enjoy spending time with my family and friends and try to take every opportunity to celebrate special occasions.

I am also an avid cyclist and have completed the London to Brighton bike ride on a number of occasions.  I also cycled Edinburgh to London as a slightly more ambitious week’s cycling holiday.

I also enjoy writing and plan to be an author of both adult fiction and children’s books in the future.

Can you sum yourself up in 5 words?

Brave, Loyal, Kind, Determined, Fun.

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