Leslie is a leading expert in claims against the police and other public authorities, and claims against corporate bodies, with expertise across the full spectrums of civil wrongs, civil litigation, human rights, data and privacy claims.
He is an expert in all aspects of inquests and public inquiries, having represented many bereaved families, in particular where there has been abuse of state or corporate power.
Leslie acts for claimants in judicial review proceedings and other public law proceedings. He regularly acts for clients in the Caribbean region on constitutional law challenges. He has represented claimants in clinical negligence and personal injury claims for the last 20 years.
Leslie is currently Professor of Law at Gresham College delivering his lecture series Death, The State and Human Rights.
Leslie has a UK-wide reputation in civil liberties and human rights. He has acted as counsel and advocate in dozens of high-profile Article 2 inquiries, such as the Grenfell Tower Inquiry, Independent Inquiry into Child Sex Abuse, Carl Sargeant inquiry, the legacy cases involving the Provisional IRA and the Anthony Grainger and Azelle Rodney inquiries. His expertise, adroit handling of sensitive matters and dedication to vulnerable clients are widely acknowledged across the country.
Leslie’s UK-wide practice in civil liberties, police law and inquests has made him the go-to specialist for deaths in custody, shootings, pursuits and restraint deaths. As a result of his expertise and adroit handling of sensitive matters, Leslie was instructed in high-profile cases such as the Birmingham Pub Bombing inquest, Kevin Clarke inquest, Sean Rigg inquest, Hillsborough disaster inquest, Mark Duggan inquest, the legacy cases involving the Provisional IRA and Christopher Alder inquest. Leslie’s notable experience in ECHR, judicial review and privacy matters proceedings is widely acknowledged in the marketplace.
Past notable cases can be viewed below. Click here to see a list of recent notable cases.
Christi and Bobby Shepherd Inquest (Thomas Cook Corfu Carbon Monoxide case) [May 2015]
Leslie represented the families of Christi and Bobby Shepherd who died tragically as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning in 2006 whilst on a Thomas Cook holiday with their father and his partner. More information here, here and here.
Eleanor De Freitas Inquest [March 2015]
Leslie represented the family of Eleanor De Freitas at the inquest into her death. More information here.
The Glenanne murders - Elizabeth MacDonald - Inquest
Leslie represented the family of Elizabeth MacDonald who was murdered by the Glenanne Gang in Northern Ireland during the troubles. More information here.
Hillsborough inquests [March 2014]
Leslie represented 11 of the 96 families whose love ones died in the Hillsborough Stadium disaster. More information here.
Arsema Dawit inquest
Arsema Dawit aged 15 was stabbed in excess of 60 times and died in 2008. Leslie and Una Morris represented Arsema’s mother at the inquest into her death which looked at the way the police handled her complaint that she was being harassed by the man who killed her in the weeks before her death. More information here.
Mark Duggan inquest and judicial review
Mark Duggan’s death on 4 August 2011 sparked civil unrest in the United Kingdom. Leslie represented Mark’s family and loved ones. More information here.
Azelle Rodney public inquiry
Azelle Rodney was killed having been shot six times by Metropolitan Police Officer, Anthony Long. Leslie represented Azelle’s mother at the public inquiry into the death. In 2013, Sir Christopher Holland, the Chairman, determined that the shooting was an unlawful killing. More information here, here and here.
Medihani v HM Coroner of Inner South District of Greater London
Leslie represented the mother of Arsema Dawit in the judicial review of the Coroner’s refusal to hold an Article 2 ECHR inquiry into the death of a 15-year-old girl stabbed to death by her boyfriend following her reporting her fear of him and threats made by him to the police. The case was reported in The Guardian, The Telegraph and by the BBC.
Sean Rigg inquest, judicial review and civil action
Leslie represented the family of Sean Rigg, who died in 2008 in custody at Brixton Police station following restraint. The case was widely reported by the BBC. More information can be found on the Sean Rigg Justice and Change Campaign website.
Clifford v Hertford Police  EWHC 815 (QB)
Leslie represented the Claimant in successfully claiming damages and substantial costs for malicious prosecution against the police. This case was reported by The Telegraph.
Leslie’s UK-wide practice in police law this has made him the go-to specialist for deaths in custody, shootings, pursuits and restraint deaths. As a result of his expertise and adroit handling of sensitive matters, Leslie was instructed in a number of high-profile cases Clifford v Hertfordship Police, R (on the application of Lee) v CC Essex Police , the legacy cases involving the Provisional IRA. Leslie’s notable experience in ECHR, judicial review and privacy matters proceedings is widely acknowledged in the marketplace.
R (Birks) v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis  EWHC 3041 (Admin)
Leslie Thomas QC represented the Second Interested Party, Marcia Rigg-Samuel, in proceedings brought by a police officer in relation to the refusal of the Commissioner to consent to his resignation pending misconduct proceedings arising out of the death of Sean Rigg. The challenge to the decision failed. More information here.
Leslie has been representing inhabitants of the island of Barbuda in several challenges against the state including a constitutional challenge against the government of Antigua in relation to the Barbudan’s rights to their land. A judicial review under the Antiguan Planning legislation and he has sought an injunction against the airport authorities in Antigua and Barbuda preventing the construction of an international airport.