Matrix Chambers

Defamation/Privacy Department

London (Bar)
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Matrix Chambers is esteemed for its strong bench of well-known barristers, who practise across a range of defamation and privacy matters encompassing libel, misuse of information, reporting restrictions and injunctions, as well as related data protection claims. The set's members act for publishers, broadcasters, companies and private individuals, representing both claimants and defendants. Barristers from the set obtained damages and a public apology from the Mirror Group, in respect of its allegations that the former police chief Sean Price was involved in phone hacking, and elsewhere they have recently defended both the BBC and Channel 5 in major privacy actions. Two experienced libel and privacy barristers have recently joined the set, further augmenting its level of expertise.

Client service:"The clerking team are always on hand, really friendly and easy to work with." "The clerking team are right on their game, and the events they put on are focused and relevant." Alison Scanes is the senior practice manager for the media and information law team.

Anthony Hudson QC
Offers expertise across the gamut of media law, including harassment, data protection and libel claims.
Strengths: "He's very practical and he works well in a team." "Underneath his calm exterior he is a rottweiler."
Recent work: Acted for members of Unite in defamation, misuse of private information and data protection claims against a number of major construction companies who were allegedly involved in blacklisting of workers.

Antony White QC
Eminent media silk who is held in high regard for his knowledge of defamation law and the DPA. He is highlighted by instructing solicitors for his strong advocacy skills. He is skilled in handling breach of confidence and freedom of information cases.
Strengths: "A first-class brain and a very good manner." "Superb at the most complex media and data protection cases."
Recent work: Represented Channel 5 in the defence of a privacy claim relating to footage showing a married couple being evicted, which was broadcast in the show Can’t Pay? We’ll Take It Away!.

Ben Silverstone
Impressive junior with a broad practice covering the full ambit of media law. He frequently appears in high-profile defamation and data protection cases.
Strengths: "Very matter-of-fact and very good at focusing on the issues." "Extremely efficient, pleasant to deal with, very sensible."
Recent work: Defended Associated Newspapers against a claim brought by a businessman in breach of confidence, misuse of private information, data protection and harassment.

Catrin Evans QC
Possesses a phenomenal reputation at the Defamation Bar and is frequently a top choice among instructing solicitors for sensitive libel and DPA claims. She acts for and against high-profile individuals, as well as major publishers and broadcasters. She has substantial experience handling privacy claims with an international angle.
Strengths: "A joy to work with, and she has great judgement."
Recent work: Represented Kim Suttle in a libel and harassment claim against a 'keyboard warrior' who carried out an extensive online trolling campaign targeting her.

Edward Craven
Junior barrister who has established an enviable reputation in the field of libel and privacy. He has a wealth of experience in phone hacking claims and is frequently instructed in a variety of other media disputes.
Strengths: "An outstanding advocate with top drafting skills. A rare example of a top academic talent who is perfectly adept at client interaction." "He's extremely professional, really responsive and a very hard-working lawyer."
Recent work: Represented the Media Lawyers Association in its intervention before the Supreme Court in the Lachaux case, concerning the meaning of 'serious harm' in Section 1 of the Defamation Act 2013.

Gavin Millar QC
Premier defamation and privacy specialist who is often the media's first port of call for their most sensitive and important cases. He has wide-ranging media expertise in freedom of press, reporting restrictions and contempt cases and acts for all the major newspaper groups and their journalists.
Strengths: "Very strong on the defendant media side."
Recent work: Defended the BBC against Sir Cliff Richard's privacy claim in respect of its broadcast of a raid on his home.

Guy Vassall-Adams QC
Media and information law specialist who has a strong track record of success in high-profile media claims involving press intrusion and defamation.
Strengths: "He really gets stuck into the details and rolls up his sleeves. A calm genius."
Recent work: Represented the Media Lawyers Association in its intervention before the Supreme Court in the Lachaux case, which considered the meaning of 'serious harm' in Section 1 of the Defamation Act 2013.

Hugh Tomlinson QC
Widely regarded as a top-flight privacy silk who has been at the forefront of developments in the law in terms of privacy and defamation. He is highly active in cases involving reporting restrictions and is frequently called upon to assist with emergency injunctions.
Strengths: "A walking legal encyclopaedia. Gets straight to the point and will tell you how it is; his advice is indispensable." "Authoritative, yet approachable and pleasant to work with. Hugh is innovative and operates at the top of his game."
Recent work: Acted for the former Chief Constable of Cleveland, Sean Price, in a libel action in connection with three Daily Mirror articles linking him to the hacking of journalists' phones. The Mirror subsequently published an apology stating the allegations were untrue.

Ian Helme
Senior defamation and privacy junior who is particularly well regarded for his representation of clients in data protection and freedom of information matters.
Strengths: "Exceptionally bright; he provides robust and pragmatic advice and brings the subject matter to life." "He's a real problem solver."
Recent work: Acted for successful defendant David de Freitas, who had been accused of libel by his daughter's former partner, in the leading Court of Appeal case considering the 'public interest' test under the Defamation Act 2013.

Lorna Skinner
Leading media and information law junior who is crafting a strong reputation in the fields of defamation, misuse of private information and data protection. She is highly experienced in injunctions, inquiries, Supreme Court cases and other high-profile disputes.
Strengths: "She's imaginative and has extremely good ideas."
Recent work: Acted for Appleby in its breach of confidence claim against the BBC arising from the publication of the so-called Paradise Papers.

Sara Mansoori
Impressive media junior specialising in privacy, defamation, information and data protection law. She is experienced in phone hacking claims and regularly acts for celebrities and people in the public eye. She represents both claimants and defendants in media matters
Strengths: "Strategic and incisive. We appreciate Sara's calm counsel and sage advice." "Very diligent, thorough and trustworthy."
Recent work: Successfully represented Majed Al-Zeer, director of the Palestinian Return Centre, in a libel and data protection claim against Reuters relating to a profile of him published on their compliance database, which linked him to terrorism.