Rebecca Hill

Year of Call: 2004

‘Regarded amongst the best in the field. A robust advocate who brings a high level of technical expertise to any case.’

The Legal 500 2021 for Extradition

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Overview

Rebecca Hill is a leading practitioner in extradition and international crime who has worked at the forefront of this niche area for more than a decade. Rebecca’s significant expertise in human rights and European law complements her public law practice in which she represents individuals in challenges against the State and the Government. She regularly acts in cases of the utmost gravity before all levels of Court including the Divisional and Administrative Court and the European Court of Human Rights.

Rebecca is ranked in Chambers and Partners as a band 2 leader in the field of Extradition at the London Bar and is also ranked in tier 2 in The Legal 500. It is a mark of her experience and expertise that she has been consistently recognised since 2009.

Rebecca’s strength lies in her aptitude for identifying and arguing complex and novel legal challenges combined with exceptional client care. The guides say the following about Rebecca:

"An excellent advocate and communicator who is exceptionally knowledgeable on extradition law."

Chambers & Partners 2022

‘ Rebecca is an excellent advocate and communicator who is exceptionally knowledgeable regarding extradition law. ’

The Legal 500 2022

"Has the ability to present the case really well and hold the attention of the court." "She is extremely pleasant to work with and very good at explaining complex issues to clients." "Her levels of client care are second to none; she is compassionate, committed and determined to achieve the right result."

Chambers and Partners 2020.

 "Very knowledgeable when it comes to various jurisdictions and someone who is good at research."

Chambers & Partners 2021.

"Always very impressive in terms of her advocacy and written work."

Chambers and Partners 2019.

"She is great, very dependable and is destined to go a long way in the law."

Chambers and Partners 2018

"She is enormously personable, and an outgoing and engaging advocate."

 

Chambers and Partners 2016.

Judicial appointments

  • Deputy District Judge: South Eastern Circuit. 
  • Fee-paid Judge of the First-tier Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber).

Professional Panel Appointments

  • Attorney General's Panel of Counsel: B Panel.
  • Level 2 appointed prosecutor on Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) list of appointed advocates.
  • Specialist level 2 prosecutor on the CPS Extradition list.

Additional Information

Direct Public Access

Rebecca accepts direct public access instructions in suitable cases.

Education

  • 2004 Middle Temple Harmsworth Scholar
  • 2004 Bar Vocational Course, Nottingham Law School
  • 2003 LLB (Hons) Nottingham University

Extradition & International

Rebecca prosecutes and defends in the most serious and complex cases, involving both European and International jurisdictions and raising the full spectrum of issues including technical and human rights arguments. In addition, she is experienced in ancillary Judicial Reviews, habeas corpus applications and submissions to the European Court of Human Rights. This breadth of experience, including the prosecution work, enables Rebecca to identify novel defence issues and to give clear practical advice from a position of comprehensive knowledge and understanding.

Rebecca is instructed to advise in cases of international individuals ‘at risk’ of extradition and those who have been returned to the UK by ‘import extraditions’. As such her expertise encompasses every area of work in the extradition field. 

Rebecca’s reputation as an extradition specialist had resulted in her appearance as an expert in a number of forums; including BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5 News. 

She frequently provides training to solicitors on an ad-hoc basis on current legal issues and topics and has lectured delegates from the Commonwealth Secretariat on the merits and difficulties of the European Arrest Warrant scheme. 

Judicial Review & Public Law

Rebecca is appointed to the Attorney General’s ‘B’ Panel of counsel to advise the Government on a range of substantial and complex legal matters. Her appointment to this ‘fiercely’ competitive Panel is reflective of her aptitude and expertise in all areas of public law.  

As with extradition, Rebecca’s experience representing Government affords a unique insight and she also represents individuals in judicial reviews, writs for habeas corpus and other public law challenges.

Immigration

Rebecca’s extensive experience in international human rights’ work places her perfectly to represent the interests of clients resisting removal from the UK or seeking entry clearance. Rebecca has represented Claimants in the First Tier and Upper Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) and has a particular interest in asylum claims and cases involving the victims of trafficking. She is ideally placed to advise in cases with linked extradition proceedings.

Criminal Defence

Rebecca is an experienced criminal barrister, having acted in serious and complex cases including murder, international fraud, child cruelty, ‘professional’ armed robberies (cash-in-transit) and serious sexual assaults.

Professional Memberships

  • Defence Extradition Lawyers Association (DELF).
  • Criminal Bar Association (CBA).
  • Extradition Lawyers Association (ELA).
  • Bar Human Rights Committee (BHRC).

Cases of Note

Extradition

First extradition hearing under the new post-Brexit Trade and Cooperation Agreement

Rebecca'sclient was arrested at Court on a European Arrest Warrant issued in April 2020. Pursuant to Article LAW.SURR.112 of the agreement EAWs issued, but not executed prior to 31st Dec 2020 are to be treated as 'arrest warrants' under the new scheme. Thus the hearing became the first extradition hearing under the post-Brexit 'Surrender Arrangements'. Judgment was adjourned.

MI and BI v Italy [2018] A.C.D. 98

Represented the first Appellant in this lead Divisional Court appeal relating to the right of children to be heard under Article 12 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. In particular, whether and how district judges need to hear from children before making a decision regarding their parents’ extradition.

Brazil v PD [2018]

Secured the discharge of the Requested Person who faced a 5 year sentence for firearms offences. Successfully argued that prison conditions in Brazil would breach PD’s right to freedom from inhumane and degrading treatment.

USA v RL

Instructed on behalf of the Requested Person, in this case concerning the complex issue of the US Civil Commitment regime which enables sexual offenders to be incarcerated indefinitely. On behalf of the Requested Person, it was argued that the regime breaches the Art 5 right to liberty. The matter presently awaits a decision by the Secretary of State for the Home Department.

France v Kayani

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2016/jul/26/suspected-trafficker-sent-hundreds-migrants-britain-court-told. Instructed on behalf of the French authorities who sought the Requested Person's extradition for serious offences of human trafficking. The RP resisted extradition on grounds that the warrant was invalid, that he was not wanted for the purpose of trial and that he should be tried in the UK. Mr Kayani's extradition was ordered.

Italy v Doci [2016] EWHC 2100 (Admin)

Represented the Appellant in this lead case on the application of a new provision in the Extradition Act 2003, s12A. The matter involved expert evidence on complex provisions of Italian law and the interrelationship between European and Domestic law. A decision is presently awaited on the Appellant's application for leave to appeal to the Supreme Court.

Zagorskij v Lithuania [2015] EWHC 2335 (Admin)

Represented a gay Lithuanian man convicted of sexually assaulting another man and required to serve a sentence. It was argued that whilst Lithuanian prisons are generally Art 3 compliant, homophobia in the State is so rife that it rendered the RP a uniquely vulnerable prisoner who could not be protected.

Hungary v Agardi [2014] EWHC 3433 (Admin)

Representing this Defendant in the test case on Hungarian prison conditions. The case involves the calling of a number of experts and complex legal argument. The cases of four other defendants are linked in order to comprehensively analyse the conditions and reach a conclusive determination which will be binding in all other Hungarian cases.

Albania v Voci (2014) EWHC 4030 (Admin)

Instructed to represent the Defendant in his appeal against extradition order. The Defendant’s return is sought in relation to a murder in 1997. Multiple arguments being raised, namely conviction in absence, retrial rights failing to meet Art 6 standards, prison conditions and risk from non-state actors arising from blood feuds which are well documented in Albania. The case involves no less than three separate experts as well as reliance on voluminous open-source international material.

Netecza v Holland [2014] EWHC 1527 (Admin)

Represented the interests of the Requesting Judicial Authority in this writ for habeas corpus arising from the extension of time for an individual's removal.

Publications and Media Appearances

Law Brief Update

Rebecca is co-author of extradition updates for Law Brief Update, an email update of key developments in case law which is circulated to over 10,000 lawyers on a monthly basis.

BBC News

29th March 2012 – Interview addressing the issues arising from the Shrien Dewani extradition.

Channel 4 News

17th December 2011 – Undertook interview explaining the Extradition Act 2003 and commenting upon the Assange extradition.

Channel 5 News

9th December 2011 – Interviewed as expert on extradition to South Africa in relation to the Dewani extradition.

Commonwealth Secretariat Conference 2008

Lectured delegates on the European Arrest Warrant regime and broader principles of extradition.