David Sellwood specialises in immigration, asylum, nationality and human rights law. He acts in public and private law proceedings in courts and tribunals at all levels, including SIAC and the Supreme Court. He is regularly instructed in complex asylum, deportation and citizenship deprivation proceedings; judicial reviews; and claims challenging unlawful immigration detention.
David is co-convenor of Garden Court’s immigration team and ranked in Chambers and Partners, UK Bar (Immigration).
David has a broad immigration, asylum and human rights practice, both advisory and advocacy based. He has detailed knowledge and experience of the Immigration Rules, immigration legislation and policy, and the European Convention on Human Rights. He was junior counsel in the key authority on private life and administrative removal - Rhuppiah v SSHD - both in the Court of Appeal ( EWCA Civ 803), and the Supreme Court ( UKSC 58). More recently he appeared in Birch (Precariousness and mistake; new matters)  UKUT 86 (IAC), a reported Presidential panel decision dealing with similar issues.
David regularly receives instructions in deportation proceedings concerned with protection and or human rights issues. Cases include Andell (foreign criminal – para 398)  UKUT 198 (IAC) (the definition of a ‘foreign criminal’ under the Immigration Rules); IA (Pakistan) v SSHD  EWCA Civ 784 (as junior counsel, deportation and Article 8, ECHR); IR (Jamaica) v SSHD  EWCA Civ 419 (as junior counsel, deportation and Article 8, ECHR); and SB (refugee revocation; IDP camps) Somalia  UKUT 358 (IAC) (as junior counsel, revocation of refugee status and country conditions in Somalia). His knowledge and experience of asylum and subsidiary protection claims has developed over a number of years, having previously worked as an accredited Senior Immigration Caseworker in private practice and the NGO sector.
David’s judicial review practice involves challenges to a whole range of immigration related decisions, including: unlawful immigration detention; the conditions and treatment of detainees at Immigration Removal Centres; refusal to provide support and accommodation to migrants; failure to recognise victims of trafficking and modern day slavery; refusal to recognise further submissions as a fresh claim under the Immigration Rules; certification of protection and human rights claims; entry clearance refusals; delays in decision making; refusal to provide biometric residence cards to migrants; removal during on-going civil claims; refusal of the Upper Tribunal (IAC) to grant permission to appeal; and the refusal to naturalise or register individuals as British citizens.
David is regularly instructed in unlawful detention / false imprisonment claims in the Administrative Court and County Court. He advises, drafts, and undertakes advocacy at all stages of proceedings. He has particular expertise in the treatment of Foreign National Offenders, and vulnerable detainees who fall under the Home Office’s Adults at Risk policies, including those with mental health issues; and victims of torture or modern day slavery. Recent cases include R (Soltany & Ors) v SSHD  EWHC 2291 (Admin), a challenge to the lock-in regime and detention conditions at Brook House Immigration Removal Centre.
David regularly advises and represents individuals with claims to British citizenship or subject to citizenship deprivation, both on national security grounds or as a result of alleged fraud. Recent cases include R3 v SSHD (SC/150/2018) (19 February 2021), an appeal in SIAC against citizenship deprivation where the SSHD argued the Appellant had aligned himself with an Al-Qaeda affiliate group in Syria and posed a national security risk.
David has significant international human rights experience, having worked and studied in the area for a number of years prior to the Bar. He has been involved in drafting petitions to the Inter American Commission on Human Rights, including in the case of a Ukrainian national facing execution in Virginia: IACHR, Report No. 53/13, Case 12.864, Merits, Ivan Teleguz, United States, July 15, 2013. David also co-authored an amicus curiae brief addressing prison conditions in the U.S. in a European Court of Human Rights case: Babar Ahmad and Others v United Kingdom (Application Nos 24027/07, 11949/08 and 36742/08, Judgment, 10 April 2012).