Philip Rule

Viewing: International Human Rights for Philip Rule

Philip has particular expertise in international human rights law.
Philip worked in the Cayman Islands in the summer of 2017, and is an attorney called to the Bar of the Cayman Islands. His work there included an action under the Bill of Rights and by way of judicial review successfully seeking an injunction to prevent the removal from the jurisdiction of a Jamaican man facing a charge of murder that raised the real risk of a death penalty being imposed. A diplomatic and prosecutorial assurance was sought from Jamaica to ensure the risk of a violation of the right to life guaranteed under the constitution of the Cayman Islands was removed.
He was also instructed to settle judicial review proceedings seeking to quash the removal of a prisoner serving a mandatory life sentence taken to the UK many thousands of miles from his family to serve his sentence. This action also relies upon international human rights protections and constitutionally protected human rights.
Philip’s skill in appellate work attracts instruction also in matters arising in a variety of other contexts that require the expertise of an appellate advocate. For example Philip was instructed by a leading US firm to settle an appeal application to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council in a matter arising in the context of copyright law, appealing from the Falkland Islands Court of Appeal.
Philip is an established specialist in matters raising issues under domestic and international human rights protections, invoking more than one international human rights instrument, cases affecting civil liberties, or raising questions of constitutional significance. He has established particular expertise in matters concerning the treatment of those subjected to detention or to imprisonment. His work also includes claims for discrimination concerning the protection of Article 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights 1950. He has experience of advancing human rights arguments concerning international norms and Convention rights before the domestic courts and to courts outside the UK.
Philip has advised foreign-based companies, and private-client individuals, including a member of a well-known Gulf state Royal Family, in relation to criminal proceedings within England and Wales in which they have been involved or retained an interest in. This has included consideration of matters beyond the four walls of the courtroom and included advice upon issues of legal professional privilege, witness summonses, access to closed proceedings, and matters extending to management of publicity and press relations. He provides tailored and tactically astute guidance and advice to his clientele.
Philip was instructed by a Cuban national detained in the Cayman Islands and seeking advice and representation in relation to delays to processing of his asylum application, and concerning the conditions of immigration detention in which he was held. The issues concerned the Bill of Rights protections similar to, and familiar to those who have knowledge of, those found within the European Convention on Human Rights 1950.
Philip has been instructed to advise a person repatriated to the UK from a country in the Far East as to his human rights in relation to the length of sentence to be imposed within the UK following his transfer.
Philip’s public law work often involves cases that have a civil law and criminal law overlap or elements of both affecting the individual client, and he has expertise in conducting concurrent or sequential proceedings or litigation. He is comfortable in both the criminal and civil jurisdiction of the courts. In criminal assets recovery and confiscation work he has experience of dealing with assets held in multiple jurisdictions.
Philip is regularly instructed by firms based in the United States and Ontario, Canada, and is often sought out by commercial and business law solicitors or attorneys who require guidance on the practice of an area of law for an existing client with which they are not themselves yet familiar. He is friendly and approachable and happy to guide professional clients through practical and procedural steps relating to the English criminal law, or any other area in which a lay client may find themselves embroiled and requiring legal services.
Philip has recognised skill both as an advocate in oral submissions and in cross-examination, and in drafting pleadings. In the UK for example Philip has acted in several Supreme Court cases that proceeded to a full hearing, and has drafted both written applicant submissions and respondent’s objection submissions to the Supreme Court on a number of other occasions. Philip also has considerable experience of making applications directly to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.
Philip is recognised for his skill in identifying legal issues of general public importance in the papers supplied to him. He relishes the challenge of addressing important or novel legal problems that arise in cases where the resolution of that issue offers potential benefit to his client.
In addition to his skills in identifying and formulating legal argument and presentation of the same, Philip also has considerable trial experience involving evidential fact-finding and witness handling.
European Court of Human Rights
Kaiyam, Massey and Robinson v United Kingdom (Application no. 28160/15, 28103/15 and 28443/15) (12 January 2016) 62 E.H.R.R. SE13
Application concerning Article 5(1)(a) ECHR inadmissible: this decision establishes a higher threshold test is applied to arbitrariness or disproportionality in that particular violation in comparison to that which applies to the ancillary rehabilitative obligation within Article 5 ECHR generally that is recognised by UK law.
Minter v United Kingdom (application no. 62964/14) (2017) 65 E.H.R.R. SE6
Application communicated by the Court to the Government on 15 December 2015. Concerns Articles 8 and 14 of the ECHR.
Bayliss v United Kingdom (Application no. 440/10) (10 June 2014)
Unilateral declaration and so-called ‘friendly settlement’ obtained from Government (Article 5(4) ECHR violation).
On that basis case removed from list but “the Court emphasises that, should the Government fail to comply with the terms of their unilateral declaration or should the Legal Aid Agency seek to recover, against the award made in the present decision, sums paid by way of legal aid in the domestic proceedings, the application could be restored to the list in accordance with Article 372 of the Convention”
Supreme Court cases
R v Docherty [2016] UKSC 62, [2017] 1 WLR 181, [2017] 1 Cr.App.R.(S) 31 (234), [2017] 4 All E.R. 263, [2017] 1 Archbold Review 5, (2017) 81 J.C.L. 232. Point of law of general public importance certified: [2014] EWCA Crim 1582 (Treacy LJ presiding). Queen’s Counsel was instructed to draft the notice of objection for the Crown in reply to Philip’s application but permission was granted in February 2015 (UKSC 2014/0207). The Secretary of State intervened in the proceedings. The appeal determines the application of the rule of “lex mitior” in English law and Article 7 ECHR in its application to sentences of IPP imposed post-abolition date.
R (Massey, Robinson, Haney, and Kaiyam) v SSJ [2015] AC 1344, [2015] 2 WLR 76, [2015] 2 All ER 822, (2014) 38 BHRC 313, The Times, 15 December 2014, 179 CJandJ 244 and 317, [2014] All ER (D) 114 (Dec), Led before the Supreme Court. Court found breach of the ancillary duty to progress indeterminate-sentence prisoners to release in violation of Art. 5 ECHR. Damages awarded.
R (Massey and Robinson) v Secretary of State for Justice [2013] EWHC 3777 (Admin), [2013] All ER (D) 253 (Dec). Divisional Court. Established breach of public law duty by Secretary of State in failing to resource offending-behaviour work programmes. Permission to “leapfrog” appeal to Supreme Court was obtained.
R (Sturnham) v Parole Board and SSJ (No. 2) [2013] 2 AC 254, [2013] UKSC 47, [2013] 3 WLR 281, [2013] 4 All E.R. 177, The Times, 1 August 2013
Test for release from IPP sentences challenged
(The Court of Appeal decision was also reported at [2012] 3 WLR 476)
R (Sturnham), R (Faulkner) v Parole Board and SSJ [2013] 2 AC 254, [2013] UKSC 23, [2013] 2 W.L.R. 1157, [2013] 2 All E.R. 1013, [2013] H.R.L.R. 24, (2013) 157(18) S.J.L.B. 31, The Times, 4 June 2013. The Supreme Court re-instated the damages award made at first instance for breach of Art. 5(4) ECHR by delayed parole hearing leading to frustration but not delayed release. Philip acted alone at first instance: [2011] EWHC 938 (Admin).
R v Foye
Application to appeal against murder conviction on the basis that the diminished responsibility burden is contrary to the presumption of innocence and Art. 6 ECHR.
Point of law of general importance certified by Hughes LJ V-P, as he then was.
Supreme Court refused permission to appeal (UKSC 2013/0157).
London Borough of Newham v Sumal and Sons
Considering written submissions the Supreme Court refused permission to the Prosecution to appeal against this decision in which Philip successfully obtained the quashing of a confiscation order imposed upon a landlord who had breached a regulatory requirement (UKSC 2013/0020).
Court of Appeal (Civil Division), Divisional Court and Administrative Court selected cases.
R. (Knights) v. Secretary of State for Justice [2017] 4 W.L.R. 134, C.A. (Civ. Div.), [2017] EWCA Civ. 1053. Judicial review appeal concerning detention and Article 5 and 14 ECHR.
R (Shields-McKinley) v Secretary of State and Lord Chancellor [2017] EWHC 658 (Admin), [2017] 1 W.L.R. 3705, [2017] 2 Cr App R (S) 17 (113), [2017] A.C.D. 64 (190), [2017] Crim LR 809, [2017] All ER (D) 22 (Apr). Application for habeas corpus allowed, application for judicial review dismissed. Concerns days in custody pursuant to a European Arrest Warrant and the application of s243 of the Criminal Justice Act 2003.
R (Dilks) v SSJ and Probation Service [2015] EWHC 11 (Admin), [2015] All ER (D) 93 (Jan). Judicial review of delayed provision of release on temporary licence, the public law duty owed to provide sufficient places in Approved Premises for release of indeterminate prisoners, and Equality Act 2010 duties and gender discrimination.
R (Guntrip) (no2) v Parole Board and SSJ [2014] EWHC 4180 (Admin), [2015] A.C.D. 67 (181), [2014] All ER (D) 185 (Dec), Divisional Court. Art. 5(4) ECHR breach in parole delay. Damages awarded for distress. Secretary of State’s cancellation of parole board hearing while offender being psychiatrically assessed breaching offender’s right to timely review - decision to cancel review taken unilaterally, undermining parole board’s status independent of executive and frustrating discharge of its art.5 functions.
R (Parratt) v PB and SSJ [2014] EWCA Civ 1478, [2014] All ER (D) 255 (Nov). Appeal successful in challenge to dismissal of claim for damages for Art. 5(4) ECHR breach. Judgment establishes the balance of probabilities test is appropriate to establishing consequential effect of loss of liberty at delayed previous hearing enabling move to open conditions.
R (Fletcher, Young and another) v SSJ [2014] EWHC 3586 (Admin), [2015] A.C.D. 41, [2015] 3 All E.R. 558, [2014] All ER (D) 10 (Nov). Test case for breach of public law duty in lack of HSP sex-offender course provision. Declaration granted for breach of general provision duty required by the James public law duty. Question of mandatory relief adjourned for SSJ to show steps being taken to remedy. Remedies hearing: [2014] EWHC 4338 (Admin). Court remains seized of case to ensure Defendant meets his public law duty and the Court will determine the question of further relief in July 2015.
Bayliss v United Kingdom (application 440/2010), ECtHR. Application admitted and notice given to UK. Friendly settlement proposed for Art. 5(4) ECHR breach. Struck out upon unilateral declaration by the Government on the basis that the Government is paying an appropriate damages sum, but permission given to restore the case to the list if the Legal Aid Agency seeks to recoup from the client’s award of damages (that being the principal concern of the applicant otherwise not to accept the proposed settlement).
R (Knights) v PB and SSJ [2013] EWCA Civ 1783. Court of Appeal grant of permission to judicially review detention on grounds challenging the length or continuation of detention pursuant to an IPP as a violation of Articles 3, 5(1) and/or 14 ECHR.
R (Massey) v Secretary of State for Justice [2013] EWHC 1950 (Admin), [2013] All ER (D) 148 (Jul), Divisional Court. Alleged discrimination by LASPO 2012 against existing IPPs, contrary to HRA 1998. The Court of Appeal refused permission to appeal (Laws LJ). Application has been made to the ECHR.
R (Jarvis) v Secretary of State for Justice [2013] EWHC 803 (Admin), [2013] A.C.D. 78. SSJ breached public law duty to provide opportunity for prisoners serving indeterminate sentences to demonstrate to the Parole Board that it is no longer necessary for the public that they should remain in detention (delayed moves to open conditions), and unlawfully failed to publish his amended policy on transfer of prisoners to open prisons.
R (M) v Chief Constable of Hampshire [2012] 1 WLR 1157, [2011] EWHC 1610 (Admin), [2011] All ER (D) 208 (Jul) [2012] A.C.D. 55 (19), DC, CLW/12/06/17, (2013) 157(15) S.J. 10, and at Archbold para. 20-267. Divisional Court. Challenge to the interpretation given to the sex offender notification requirements by the Hampshire Police. Challenged as breach of Art. 8 ECHR, and domestic legislative difference between decisions of Graham and Wiles determined. (Appeal confirmed Divisional Court’s decision: [2014] 1 WLR 179, CA. Application by the claimant for permission to appeal from the decision of the Court of Appeal (Civil Division) refused by Supreme Court: [2014] 1 W.L.R. 1233, S.C).
R (M) v Chief Constable of Hampshire [2012] 1 WLR 1157, [2011] EWHC 1610 (Admin), [2011] All ER (D) 208 (Jul) [2012] A.C.D. 55 (19), DC, CLW/12/06/17, (2013) 157(15) S.J. 10, and at Archbold para. 20-267. Divisional Court. Challenge to the interpretation given to the sex offender notification requirements by the Hampshire Police. Challenged as breach of Art. 8 ECHR, and domestic legislative difference between decisions of Graham and Wiles determined. (Appeal confirmed Divisional Court’s decision: [2014] 1 WLR 179, CA. Application by the claimant for permission to appeal from the decision of the Court of Appeal (Civil Division) refused by Supreme Court: [2014] 1 W.L.R. 1233, S.C).
Philip successfully established for the very first time a duty of care owed to a prisoner in the provision of Home Detention Curfew release, and that as a result of negligent failure to administer and provide that HDC an award of damages may be made: McCreaner v MOJ [2014] EWHC 569 (QB), [2015] 1 WLR 354, [2014] All ER (D) 77 (Mar)). That success involved persuading one High Court judge not to follow the example set by another High Court Judge in a previous claim. The proper level of damages was subsequently agreed with the Treasury Solicitors.
Philip’s work in 2014 has continued to push boundaries, and he successfully overturned on appeal a refusal to find that a delay to a prisoner’s move to open conditions had setback the return to liberty by that prisoner at the subsequent parole review: establishing that there is no impediment to such a claim for consequential delay in R (Parratt) v SSJ [2014] EWCA Civ 1478, [2014] All ER (D) 255 (Nov).
R (M) v Chief Constable of Hampshire [2011] EWCA Civ 1630 . Court of Appeal judgment the appeal was not in a “criminal cause or matter” and that jurisdiction properly lay from the Divisional Court’s judgment.
R v X –Case tried prior to CA ruling indicating trial judge’s directions wrong in law. Conviction quashed by Court of Appeal.
R v Foye [2013] EWCA Crim 475, (2013) 177 JP 449, [2013] Crim LR 839 (Andrew Ashworth QC), [2013] M.H.L.R. 182, [2013] All ER (D) 248 (Apr). Appeal against murder conviction on the basis that the diminished responsibility burden is contrary to the presumption of innocence and Art. 6 ECHR. A certificate of general public importance was granted by the Court of Appeal (Hughes LJ V-P, as he then was, presiding). Application was submitted to the Supreme Court but permission refused to appeal.
Lotto Williams [2011] EWCA Crim 1889 - appeal against sentence allowed. Minimum term (“tariff”) for murder reduced from 14 years to 11 years.
Philip is repeatedly instructed as first and sole counsel in murder defences and in each case he successfully secured extension for Queen’s Counsel to lead him at trial. He has been instructed as the junior advocate to defend in murder cases by five different firms with whom he regularly worked, in recognition of his skill and his diligent work for all his clients.
R v Thompson, Old Bailey. Two-month trial. One of two trials in which eight defendants were separated into groups of four to be tried. Allegation of conspiracy to murder from prison cell laid against client, and against one other prisoner alleged to be the ringleader, the offence committed by the use of two mobile telephones that has been used by both prisoners in the cell during lock-up time. The murder was committed by gunshot to the head of a young boy whose body was found burnt in the remains of a car set ablaze in south-east London the day before a trial was due concerning the client and the other alleged conspirators for conspiracy to supply firearms, the deceased being a co-accused who had given an unhelpful prepared statement to the police in his interview. Client’s cell-mate tried jointly along with him was convicted, but Philip’s client was not convicted.
R v Foye, Luton Crown Court. Prisoner serving for murder accused of the murder of a fellow prisoner imprisoned at HMP Grendon Underwood therapeutic community prison. Two-week trial. Issue at trial was diminished responsibility.
R v Ghani, Birmingham Crown Court. Stabbing by co-habitee of multiple-occupancy hostel accommodation (Philip and his leader were compelled to withdraw from this case shortly before trial).
R v Roszavolgyi, Reading Crown Court, before a High Court Judge. Double-murder charge concerning ex-partner and her adult son. Four-week trial. Client’s defence raised issues of intention, self-defence, provocation and diminished responsibility.
R v Mustafa, Reading Crown Court, one of two co-accused charged with both conspiracy to rob and with murder. The issue at trial was one of intention. Two-week trial.
R v Williams, Reading Crown Court, one of three co-accused charged with murder arising from an apparent attempted robbery of a drugs-den. Four-week trial.
A specialist in claims for unlawful imprisonment, negligent imprisonment, and violations of Article 5 of the European Convention on Human Rights (the right to liberty). Philip has also enjoyed considerable success in claims for violation of Art. 8 of the ECHR (the right to respect for private and family life) particularly where detained persons have been denied family visitation rights.
Philip conducts civil claims for damages on behalf of former or serving prisoners or detained persons before the High Court and county court complaining of breaches of Articles of the ECHR, or of unlawful imprisonment at common law, and other actions. In 2009 Philip was the first advocate in England and Wales to secure compensation for a prisoner who was not released but whose parole hearing was delayed in violation of Art. 5(4) ECHR (through a successful judicial review claim).
In 2014 his notable cases have included a significant settlement with the Government’s Treasury Solicitors for payment of damages to a client who was not immediately released from prison despite a Parole Board direction. Philip also obtained a monetary settlement for another client in respect of a failure to provide him with inter-prison visits to enable visitation with his brother over an unreasonable period of time for which an Art. 8 ECHR claim was pursued.
In 2013 Philip won an appeal at the Leeds County Court in relation to an Art. 8 ECHR claim concerning the prevention of a son visiting his father in a high-security prison, and the Judge on appeal awarded damages to both son and father.
Philip has represented claimants at full trial in multi-track actions against the police brought for assault, negligence or misfeasance.
He regularly advises as to quantum, and settles Particulars of Claim, including for personal injury, but more commonly in relation to unlawful detention or Article 8 ECHR infringements.
First-tier leading junior in public law. Noted to have particular expertise in the field of human rights and detention law. “Frighteningly intelligent.”
Legal 500 (2017)
First-tier leading junior in public law. Recognised for specialism in human rights cases and experience in the higher courts. “He has great attention to detail and a professional manner with clients.”
Legal 500 (2016)
Listed as a first-tier leading junior in public law: “A very confident operator in judicial review matters” and “Rule, who also handles criminal work, has expertise in human rights cases concerning individuals accused or convicted of criminal offences, including matters involving the unlawful treatment of prisoners”
Legal 500 (2015)
Listed as a first-tier leading junior in public law: “A public law specialist with expertise in judicial reviews and civil claims arising from unlawful treatment of prisoners” and “recognised for his experience in prison law cases where there have been alleged breaches of human rights”
Legal 500 (2014)
“judicial review expert Philip Rule” and “able to intersect different areas of law to obtain the best possible outcome”
Legal 500 (2013)
Admitted to the International Criminal Court’s list to work on cases proceeding at the Hague
Appointed to Crown Prosecution Service specialist Fraud Panel and specialist Serious Crime Group Panel in March 2013 at the creation of those panels. Philip has been an appointee to the Attorney-General’s lists of prosecution advocates for over ten years.
Pupil supervisor (2010)
Winner of the LAPG Legal Aid Barrister of the Year award 2017
Nominated for the Modern Law Award for Barrister of the Year 2017-2018
Administrative Law Bar Association
Criminal Bar Association
Bar Human Rights Committee
Human Rights Lawyers Association

Latest News & Publications

Henry Pitchers QC, Philip Rule and Ramya Nagesh, of No5 Chambers, are instructed to represent the family of Saskia Jones...

Date: Tue, 04 Aug 2020
On 15 July 2020 the Vice-President, Lord Justice Fulford, and Mrs Justice Whipple dismissed a judicial review brought against the Secretary of State claiming interference with, or the appearance of interference with, the independence of the Criminal Cases Review Commission (“CCRC”) (R (Warner) v SSJ [2020] EWHC 1894 (Admin))....

Date: Wed, 15 Jul 2020
On 17 June 2020 Mostyn J granted permission to the claimant, RM, to bring judicial review proceedings against the Manchester City Council...

Date: Fri, 19 Jun 2020