Doughty Street Chambers‘ members Amal Alamuddin, John Jones and Wayne Jordash represent three DIFFERENT Libyan clients on EITHER side of the SAME Libyan case at the ICC. That is ALL the case’s participants… Everyone.
Simultaneously, DSC’s Amal Alamuddin represents Abdulla Senussi, DSC’s John Jones represents Saif Gaddafi while on the opposing side DSC’s Wayne Jordash represents Libya. As a result, DSC lawyers have filed briefs as part of greater teams to both retain Saif Gaddafi & Abdulla Senussi in Libya AND to move them to the ICC in the Netherlands.
MATRIX CHAMBERS AND DOUGHTY STREET CHAMBERS
Sound familiar? Matrix Chambers’ members provided two teams that represented BOTH sides of the same issue facing Libya at the ICC. Matrix Chambers was hired by the Libyan Government’s Litigation Office to represent them at the ICC. As a result, Matrix lawyers IN TWO TEAMS coupled with Doughty Street lawyers have filed briefs before the ICC to both retain Abdulla Senussi and Saif Gaddafi on Libyan soil and to move them to the International Criminal Court in the Netherlands.
SEE our PDF: Matrix Chambers Members This ICC Document and Matrix Chambers’ site demonstrates the interlaced world of London human rights lawyers, their law firms and their clients, in this case, Libya.
See Amal Alamuddin, John Jones and Wayne Jordash in the document to the right.
Doughty Street Chambers on Twitter
Doughty Street Chambers Twitter– Unabashed about being on ‘both sides’
This tweet from Doughty Street Chambers came after the 24 July 2013 ICC final ruling on Abdullah Senussi. The ruling reaffirmed the October 2013 decision in which the ICC Judges APPROVED of the Libyan justice system by saying that Libya IS WILLING and ABLE to provide a FAIR trial.
Doughty Street on both sides: case v. Al-Senussi inadmissible in ICC. Wayne Jordash QC for Libya; Amal Alamuddin for Al-S…
In other words, Ms. Alamuddin lost and Mr. Jordash won. However, from the tweet at the bottom, DO we get a glimpse of The Doughty Street Chambers’ mindset? Notice the tweet with the exclamation mark. Not apparent but it was written by DSC Academic, Kevin Jon Heller, now removed. As he is a DSC employee & it was sent to the DSC tweet & on the official DSC account, is he reflecting a position of the firm? You decide but with an exclamation mark Mr. Heller stated, “That is one way to ensure that DSC wins!”
For Doughty Street’s Mr. Heller, representing ‘both sides’, ‘that’s one way to ensure the DSC wins!’
Doughty Street Chambers: Members’ articles discussing Saif Gaddafi’s legal options PRIOR to representing him. DSC Image: Robertson
Into the human rights mix, we include the links to a series of three articles about Libya, Muammar and Saif Gaddafi written by their Doughty Street founding partner, Geoffrey Robertson. The excerpt from Geoffrey Robertson’s article, Why Libya Must Send Saif Gaddafi to the Hague details the skeleton argument for how he sees that “Saif has the making of an arguable defense.” “He was, after all, a member of Libya’s legitimate government and thus entitled to urge and use force…” It was published shortly after Saif was captured. We note that Doughty Street Chamber’s John R.W.D. Jones is Saif’s ICC lawyer… AND the Government of Libya has chosen within this environment a lawyer to represent THEIR rights, Wayne Jordash. HERE, HERE, and HERE.
Aside from Founding Partner Geoffrey Robertson’s publicly offering the argument for Saif’s defense, this is Amal Alamuddin’s February 2012 contribution.
Her article is heavily slanted towards the ICC’s jurisdiction by being conveniently dismissive of Libya’s right to retain and try Saif in Libya. Inaccurately, she argued that as the process has already begun, Libya’s ONLY option is to surrender Saif to the ICC. Ms. Alamuddin DID mention that Libya has a legitimate option to end the ICC through the diplomatic channels, but only in her conclusion. Ms. Alamuddin went on to DISMISS Libya’s diplomatic right of Article 16 within a footnote. SEE our PDF: Amal Alamuddin’s article about Saif and ICC
Actually, in direct contrast to Ms. Alamuddin’s assessment, a former legal adviser to the ICC prosecutor weighed in a few months earlier. An international human rights lawyer himself, Dr. Payam Akhavan said that the International Criminal Court proceedings COULD BE CANCELLED through diplomatic channels. That is through the United Nations’ Security Council. Our Copy of Interview 3:27. SEE Dr. Akhavan’s quote in our other article.
We note that this simple, diplomatic option dismissed within Ms. Alamuddin’s footnote would END the international dimension of Saif Gaddafi’s celebrity case by sending to the diplomats, BEFORE the human rights lawyers got involved, BEFORE their ICC petitions started to flow, and BEFORE their per-hourly-legal-fees start to amass.
Why defend Abdulla Senussi? Chris Stephen from The Guardian writes:
‘With the Senussi case active, Alamuddin will not be drawn on why she is defending a man many think deserves all he gets. One clue comes from fellow Doughty Street lawyer John Jones QC, who is defending Saif al-Islam: “Justice needs defence lawyers. The system only works if there’s robust advocacy on both sides.”
‘Robust advocacy’ is exactly what is happening as one law firm represent ALL participants in the case. As all these barristers and their corresponding staff operate within the same physical proximity, does the issue of a breach of confidentiality even raise an eyebrow? It did for us. For our understanding we did a short background of the UK Barrister System with respect to this issue. Review of UK Barrister System
Set aside that it may be legal in the UK, is it ethical? The ethical freedom permitted to UK barristers is not ethical, legal or acceptable in much of the world, and most notably for their Libyan clientele, it is not legal in Libya. Considering what seems to be their Management Committee’s choice to represent ALL these Libyan clients, one could speculate that the pursuit of money, fame and potential book deals NOT human rights was Doughty Street Chambers’ motivation. It seems that Matrix Chambers and Doughty Street Chambers have blurred the lines of a conflict of interest in order to accept ALL their Libyan clients.
As evidence we offer this video that can attest to Matrix Chamber’s decision to represent within different cases BOTH Libyan victims of torture and THEIR Libyan torturer. This Tripoli TV video made on the 25th of January 2009, documents Matrix Client Abdulla Senussi intimidating and berating Matrix Client Sami al-Saadi and Matrix Client Abdel Hakim Belhadj by threatening ‘to have their throats slit’. Abdulla Senussi’s actions in this video are a violation of European Convention of Human Rights and the UK Human Rights Act of 1998 which Matrix Chambers, a human rights law firm, are well aware of the implication of his actions. Here, Here and Here. It is a violation of the essential rights protected by the Human Rights Act in Article 3: The Right not to be subjected to torture, inhuman treatment or degrading treatment or punishment.
As Ms. Alamuddin declined to offer a reason for her decision to defend Abdulla Senussi, we must dig deeper.
In a 12/2011 The Guardian article entitled Barrister fees spiral ever up as the economy trundles ever down. The subhead is Life is rosy for the commercial bar with average revenue per barrister at £500,000… This article starts:
As Britain lurches towards a double-dip recession, not everyone is struggling. Commercial barristers aren’t the sort to broadcast their success – indeed, their discretion is such that they can get rather annoyed with journalists who ask them to put a figure on it – but it’s no secret that they have been doing rather well of late.
The article proceeds: ‘ Figures published by The Lawyer magazine show barristers at 11 separate sets of chambers generating average annual revenue in excess of £500,000…’ We included the chart mentioned. The Lawyer Magazine’s chart shows the top 30 firms in 2011 and the statistics including turnover, revenue per barrister in each of the 30 firms. We consulted The Lawyer Magazine recently to find the current top 30. After a little calculation, we discovered that of the 30, 5 were exclusively human rights firms or had human rights departments: Blackstone Chambers, No5 Chambers, One Crown Office Row, 4-5 Grays Inn Square and Matrix Chamber. There seems to be serious money in the legal aspect of human rights.
The article noted: Matrix Chamber was ranked 25 of the 30.
Leading human rights set Matrix Chambers is now in its 13th year and has grown threefold in that time. What started out as a 23-barrister set now boasts 23 QCs and 50 juniors.
We have to wonder how much of this prosperity is due to ALL the Libyan cases represented by Matrix Chambers. The two teams (team 1: Philippe Sands, Michelle Butler) and (team 2: Professor James Crawford, Michelle Butler twice) representing the Government of Libya. Ben Emmerson representing Abdulla Senussi and Richard Hermer, Alison Macdonald, Alex Bailin, and Mark Summers providing ‘advise’ on the al-Saadi/Belhadj rendition case against members of government of former Prime Minister Tony Blair. As for Doughty Street, as of publishing we are unable to provide any statistics.
An update from the Authors: Interested in financials of Doughty Street Chambers? On 1st July 2014, we released a critique focusing on how the three Doughty Street lawyers, Amal Alamuddin, John Jones and Wayne Jordash are financially compensated for their Libyan clients. Our article.
Ms. Alamuddin compensation is from ‘a private fund of an unnamed source‘. It could be controversial as UN Security Council Resolution 1970 may be involved. We will not know until the source is named. To find our issues with Ms. Alamuddin’s financials, go to our article and scroll half way down until the same picture of her client, Abdullah Senussi. Mr. Jones receives compensation from the ICC as it was “exceptionally decided to assume the costs of Mr Gaddafi’s legal representation on a provisional basis..” An exceptional decision which is the result of an ICC legal precedent. Mr. Jordash’s compensation is part of the legions of London lawyers mostly in Matrix and Doughty Street Chambers that have made “the legal expenses of the Libyan government run into millions.” The article is John Jones, Amal Alamuddin & Libya: A Financial Cache of Libya’s ICC Case.
John Jones & Wayne Jordash
When we noticed this callous Doughty Street announcement of the final ICC judgment on Saif, and considering the threat of UN sanctions looming over Libya, we felt the need to re-emphasize the scandal of the TWO law firms hired to represent the best interests of the Libyan People. Unfortunately for Libya, it seems both Matrix Chambers’ and Doughty Street Chambers’ Management Committees chose to allow other lawyers within their respective firms to represent the opposing side while simultaneously representing Libya. Was this in the best interest of the Libyan People?
Therefore, we re-submit page 2 of this ICC document image to acknowledge that members of Doughty Street Chambers, Amal Alamuddin, John R.W.D. Jones and Wayne Jordash simultaneously represent Saif Gaddafi, Abdulla Senussi and the Government of Libya. Members of Matrix Chambers, James Crawford, Michelle Butler and Ben Emmerson simultaneously represent the Government of Libya and Abdulla Senussi. While the Libyan people are represented Ahmed El-Gehani. HERE
Parts of this op/ed article is reproduced in accordance with Section 107 of title 17 of the Copyright Law of the United States relating to fair-use and is for the purposes of criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research.
Interested in Libya’s ICC legal issues? Please consult our other articles; the lawyers and law firms that represent them.