“Words cannot describe how brilliant his work is.” “He is really good at taking on board what you say and being collaborative with solicitors.”
“This effective immigration and public/administrative law advocate has built a formidable reputation for himself over his 16 years at the Bar.”
Chambers UK Bar Guide
“Words cannot describe how brilliant his work is.” An absolutely wonderful, charming advocate.”
Chambers UK 2017
“His closing speech was a tour de force, it would be all too easy to come across as preachy or pompous but he delivered this eloquently and with great passion and emotion.” Justin Davies, Public Access Client
“His argument was built upon a precise and extensive knowledge of the relevant case law and his client’s
personal circumstances. It was conveyed with intellectual precision and a clearly expressed logic.” Dr Luke Evans, Public Access Client
“David … made me feel very strong because he encouraged me and put me at my ease. My appeal is the most important thing for me and he made me feel less pressure and I was able to cope.” YN, Public Access Client
Public law, immigration and human rights
Over the course of his 20 years of practice David has developed considerable expertise in Public and Administrative Law concentrated in the practice areas of unlawful detention, immigration, human rights, EU Free Movement, and nationality law. David has been at the vanguard of proceedings seeking to attain equality of treatment for Foreign National prisoners, particularly with regard to access to early release programs.
He is also regularly involved in civil litigation in relation to false imprisonment and unlawful detention cases trying and settling high-value claims, recovering over £100,000 in damages in just two cases since beginning of 2016.
David has an expanding practice in managed and business migration, developing on a public access basis as the Director of a new procurement company Skilled Migration. In this context he has represented individuals across the Tiers of the Points Based System, including a number of high-net-worth individuals.
Current and recent cases
Court of Appeal
JA(Ghana) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWCA Civ 1031
Case concerned procedural and substantive issues of some moment. Perhaps more crucially in the former regard the Court ruled on the operation of CPR r1.1 and relief from sanctions in accordance with rule 3.9(1) and the approach to such an application as set out in the decision of this court in Denton v TH White Ltd  EWCA Civ 906,  1 WLR 3926.
Amirfard v The Secretary of State for the Home Department  All ER (D) 280 (Feb),  EWHC 279 (Admin);  EWCA Civ 654
The claimant with Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) was refused naturalisation on bad character grounds owing to his association with crimes against humanity whilst a conscripted prison guard in Iran. His rationality challenge to this decision (he had gone AWOL, been tortured, had fled Iran and had done nothing to impugn his character over 11 years in the UK) was rejected by Lang J: The onus is on the claimant to satisfy the SSHD that he is of good character and the test is not the same as the test for exclusion from protection under Art 1F of the Refugee Convention. Although the SSHD must exercise her powers reasonably the test for disqualification is subjective.
R (on the application of Buer) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  All ER (D) 20 (Aug) ,  EWCA Civ 1109
ILR on the basis of Ankara agreement. The claimant was a Turkish worker who had been employed in the United Kingdom for four years before being refused indefinite leave to remain based on art6(1) of Decision No1-80 made pursuant to the EEC-Turkey Association Agreement. He was refused permission to bring judicial review proceedings against the decision to grant him a further three years’ leave. He was granted permission to appeal in respect of the ‘standstill clause’ at Article 13 of the decision. The Court of Appeal, Civil Division, dismissed his appeal as it was clear under the caselaw from the Court of Justice of the European Union that arts6(1) and 13 of the Decision were directed at different situations and his rights were covered by art6(1) as applied by the Secretary of State.
O v The Secretary of State for the Home Department
Concerned a challenge to the lawfulness and reasonableness of the Secretary of State’s delay in processing the Claimant’s protection despite being placed on notice that the delay was causing harm. It also challenged her decision to interview the minor Claimant in respect of the same only after he has attained the age of 17and a half in the knowledge that her conduct in so doing will deprive the Claimant of an entitlement to Discretionary Leave to Remain normally granted to unaccompanied minors.
Lee (Jamaica) v The Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWCA Civ 348
The case concerned the lawfulness of the continued exclusion of a father from his UK settled family following his deportation for serious criminal offences. The appeal was concerned essentially with where the balance lay in terms of the State’s obligation to recognise as a primary consideration the best interests of a child, where there was evidence that a child had suffered actual harm as a result of her separation from the Appellant, and its duty to protect the public from foreign nationals committing serious criminal offences.
MD (Jamaica) & JE (Jamaica) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWCA Civ 213
Case concerning the operation of a long residence concession, and in particular the proper construction of rules and policy, and the role of past and subsequent policy in defining the interpretation of statutory instruments, and whether a waiver implied by actions of a decision maker could be relied upon to inform the application of a concession. The Court of Appeal adopted a strict approach to construction finding that grants of leave to remain pursuant to an application made after the expiry of a previous grant of leave to remain did not operate to legalise the applicant’s residence during the period between the expiry of the earlier leave to remain and the subsequent grant of leave to remain. It was held also that the lawfulness of a person’s residence at any given time had to be judged by reference to the law in force at that time.
RD (Lithuania) v The Secretary of State for the Home Department
Case concerning the proper approach of the Courts to the determination of the lawfulness of deportation of EU nationals under the provisions of Directive 2004/38/EC of the European Parliament of the Council of 29 April 2004 (‘The Citizens Directive) and the Immigration (EEA) Regulations 2006. Settled by the Secretary of State.
R (on the application of Jobe) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  All ER (D) 35 (Jun),  EWHC 1702 (Admin)
Detention pending immigration deportation.
The Administrative Court, in allowing the application by the claimant Gambian national for judicial review of his immigration detention, held that, by March 2013, it had no longer been apparent to the defendant Secretary of State that it would be possible to effect deportation within a reasonable period. Accordingly, the period of detention had been longer than reasonable in all the circumstances.
R, on the Application of, Isa Mustafaj v the Secretary of State for the Home Department
The case challenged the lawfulness of the Secretary of State’s decision to refuse the Claimant’s application for protection in the United Kingdom under ECHR and the Refugee Convention and proceed to attempt to remove despite the availability findings in extradition proceedings to the effect that the Claimant’s return to Albania would contravene both Articles 2 and 3 of the Convention.
Hayati Bessuroglu & another v SSHD
The case concerns the issue of the rights of the Turkish migrants under the EU law and the interpretation of intention of Decision 1/80, particularly with regards to their right of their choice of any paid employment in the UK and the eventual entitlement to Indefinite Leave to Remain.
Kapato v Secretary of State for the Home Department
The case raised the issue of the lawfulness and proportionality of the Secretary of State’s pursuit of enforcement action by way of deportation in cases where the removal would likely affect Article 3 and 8 ECHR rights of the individual, considered in particular in the context of mental health issues.
AM and BM (Trafficked women) Albania CG  UKUT 80 (IAC)
Heard in the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal/Immigration Asylum Chamber
The case addressed the Country Guidance issues such as whether trafficked women are capable of constituting a particular social group of the Refugee Convention, to what extent the decision makers must take into account the risks of re-trafficking and the issues of stigmatisation and discrimination, the general issues of sufficiency of protection in respect of threats from traffickers (including analysis of the availability and suitability of women’s refuge’s and protected housing), the safety and reasonableness of the internal relocation alternative (in particular, vulnerability of lone female without familial support; stigmatization of single mother; availability of welfare and child care provision, availability of employment). The case-specific issues were whether the proposed removal of the Appellants from the UK was compatible with the UK’s obligations under Articles 3 and 8 of the ECHR.
David has, in the past, worked and volunteered for the Immigration Advisory Service, the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants and the Immigration Law Practitioners’ Association (ILPA). He is currently a member of the Haldane Society of Socialist Lawyers and ILPA.
Outside of his professional life he has assumed the role of a school Governor and was elected as Chair of Governors to. Westminster Diocesan School between 2009 and 2014. He has also served on working groups concerned with the establishment of Academies within the faith school system at both County and Diocesan level.
David is a long-time contributor to Macdonald’s Immigration Law and Practice 5th-9th Editions (Butterworths Lexis Nexis). A contributor to the Immigration Manual (now in 14th Edition) (HJT, 2004-2016), and has, in the past, prepared immigration chapters for both Your Rights (Liberty); and Atkins Court Forms Immigration Volume (Butterworths).
Training and research
David is also a Director of HJT Training – a specialist immigration and human rights training company. He has delivered training on all areas of immigration law to clients including Ernst Young, OISC, Red Cross, and the UNHCR. David is also involved in the preparation and assessment of OISC exams for Levels 1-3 through HJT, and in the development of a new on-line learning platform for Immigration and Public Access: HJT Learning.
He is the Director too of HJT Research which has operated for more than 16 years and has developed over that time a comprehensive database of country material on human rights conditions in over 120 countries which is published through the Electronic Immigration Network.
Over the past two years David has prepared and presented training courses on the following:
- Basic principles of Judicial Review
- Unlawful Detention: law and procedures
- Free movement and the European Union
- Nationality Law
- Rule 39 applications to the European Court of Human Rights
- Policies and concessions of the UK Border Agency (UKBA)
More of David’s notable cases can be found here.