Strategic litigation in trafficking and modern slavery cases

This session took place on Tuesday 18 August 2020


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Client 6


Rebecca is a New Zealand qualified solicitor with a background in civil litigation. In 2017 she moved to the UK to work with victims of modern slavery in the support sector. After seeing the difficulties survivors faced in accessing their support entitlements, she was drawn back to legal practice and moved to ATLEU North, the Sheffield branch of the Anti-Trafficking and Labour Exploitation Unit. She focuses her practice on public law case work, specialising in victim identification and support challenges.  She provides advice to the sector and, in partnership with Anti-Slavery International, will be developing and delivering a training and advice program to frontline project partner organisations. She is a committee member of Young Legal Aid Lawyers and helps to coordinate its Parliamentary engagement work.

Client 4


Shu Shin is a barrister at Garden Court. Her expertise covers a broad range of subject matters including equality duties, mental health and mental capacity, health care, community care, education, housing, welfare benefits, human trafficking, immigration and asylum, and deprivation of liberty both in the context of immigration detention and the Court of Protection.

Shu Shin is committed to civil legal aid and to individuals having effective access to legal remedies. She acts predominantly for individuals and public interest groups. She is on the panel of counsel for the Equality and Human Rights Commission. She regularly undertakes advisory and consultancy work for NGOs as well as governmental and intergovernmental organisations in the UK and internationally on legal policy and draft legislation. She also regularly provides training to governmental departments, local authorities, and public interest groups in the UK and internationally.

Client 1


Zoe is a barrister at Matrix. She has a particular interest in representing vulnerable clients, including human trafficking and torture survivors and unaccompanied minors. She is regularly instructed on behalf of victims of modern slavery in judicial reviews challenging detention, deportation, certification, and aspects of NRM Policy. Zoe also accepts instructions in asylum, Article 8, deportation and family reunion appeals before the IAT and in out of hours applications for injunctive relief. She has also provided advice in a strategic challenge to a far-right group accused of disrupting rescue operations in the Mediterranean. She regularly takes on BID hearings and is strongly committed to pro bono work in this area of law.

Zoe worked in politics and law reform for five years before coming to the Bar. From 2013-2016, she was involved in issues including the application of the Human Rights Act to residential care arranged by local authorities, policy change relating to the funding of safe abortions for rape victims in armed conflict and reform of investigatory powers and defamation law. In 2012, Zoe worked for an independent commission established by the Coalition Government to investigate the case for a UK Bill of Rights. From 2010-2011, she worked in New Delhi alongside grassroots disability rights activists, towards a federal bill implementing the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Client 5


Ayesha is a barrister at Matrix. She has extensive experience in immigration and asylum law, having worked in the field for the past 11 years. She regularly represents individuals in appeals in the First Tier and Upper Tribunal and the Court of Appeal, as well as in judicial review proceedings. She has a particular interest in children and vulnerable adults involved in the immigration and asylum process, including victims of trafficking. Ayesha is regularly instructed in judicial reviews connected to the NRM process, challenges to the support entitlements of victims of trafficking, asylum appeals with a trafficking element, and unlawful detention claims.

Ayesha also advises on nationality issues and is involved in applications and judicial reviews under the Windrush scheme.

She regularly provides expert opinions on immigration and nationality issues for Local Authorities, proceedings in the Family Courts and Extradition proceedings.

Ayesha is also experienced in representing individuals accused of English language test fraud, and individuals whose applications under the Points Based System cases are refused on the basis of tax discrepancies. She advises on sensitive cases where visas fall to be refused on mandatory and discretionary grounds under the Immigration Rules.

Ayesha regularly delivers talks and training (to legal and non-legal audiences) in all aspects of UK and EU immigration law, international refugee and human rights law, and the protection of victims of trafficking. She is involved in pro bono initiatives to assist refugees, including with Refugee Legal Support in Athens. Ayesha is a member of the Immigration Law Practitioners Association and the Bar Human Rights Committee.

Before coming to the Bar, Ayesha worked as a Caseworker at Refugee and Migrant Justice, the Senior Immigration Advisor at the Northern Ireland Council for Ethnic Minorities, and interned at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Ecuador, where she provided legal analysis of complex issues arising in UNHCR’s Refugee Status Determinations, and wrote legal reference material for the UNHCR Protection team. She speaks Spanish to an advanced level.