Barrister Category: DPA

Tanya Murshed

Tanya has a multi-disciplinary practice and accepts instructions from solicitors as well as members of the public on a direct access basis.

Tanya is the Founder of Evolve – Foundation for International Legal Assistance, an organisation that aims to build capacity within the legal profession, improve access to justice and promote fairness, integrity and efficiency within the criminal justice system of Uganda.

Prior to joining the bar, Tanya worked for various leading criminal law firms, Amnesty International, Medical Foundation (now Freedom from Torture) and Victim Support.


Anna Watterson

Anna has a busy and varied practice. This allows her to maintain real expertise across multiple areas of law and in different forums from the First-tier Tribunal and County Court up to the Court of Appeal. Her cross-cutting knowledge means that no aspect of her client’s situation is overlooked. She is approachable to clients and clearly explains her legal advice. In court she is persuasive and is able to respond with agility as a hearing develops, because of her thorough grasp of the law and careful preparation.

Anna joined 1MCB as a tenant in 2009 after successfully completing her pupillage in chambers. She is committed to chambers’ ethos of ensuring that all members of society can enjoy access to justice through first-class representation. She therefore accepts instructions from legally aided clients and particularly prides herself on ensuring vulnerable clients have the best possible experience of the justice system.

Before coming to the Bar she both worked at a leading immigration & human rights solicitors’ firm (Wesley Gryk LLP) and volunteered with Camden Community Law Centre, the Immigration Advisory Service and the Free Representation Unit. She continues to undertake pro bono work for Bail for Immigration Detainees (BID) and the Hackney Winter Night Shelter legal clinic.

She accepts instructions on a direct public access basis in appropriate cases.

Gwawr Thomas

Gwawr is dedicated to promoting human rights and defending civil liberties, and is especially committed to publicly funded practice.  She prides herself on her approachable and down to earth manner, her fastidious attention to detail and her tenacity in seeking a just result for those whom she represents.

Gwawr’s practice extends across a number of inter-related areas.  This not only allows her to take a holistic approach to any particular case, but also offers continuity of representation to clients whose problems straddle more than one area of law.  Accordingly, Gwawr is able to offer a seamless service to criminal clients raising complaints about their treatment in prison or by the police; to defendants who may be facing deportation proceedings upon conviction; and to immigration clients seeking redress for unlawful detention.

In appropriate cases, Gwawr is able to accept instructions directly from members of the public, community organisations and NGOs, through the Bar Council’s Public Access Scheme.

Alex Chakmakjian

Alex has established a reputation for exceptional attention to detail, assiduous client care and an imaginative style of advocacy.  His range of abilities has allowed him to conduct the most challenging cases, including representing prisoners on death row before the Supreme Court of Uganda.

Alex came to the Bar after completing his Masters degree in human rights law.  Prior to this, he accumulated substantial experience in human rights with work ranging from voluntary legal advice in Southall to missions to gather evidence from witnesses in Nepal.  His further education and earlier experience frequently inform his established multi-disciplinary practice.

He is also qualified to accept instructions from members of the public directly.

David Parvin

David specialises in all areas of criminal law, both prosecution and defence, with significant experience of Crown Court and appellate advocacy involving serious and complex cases.

David has an approachable manner and is well liked by clients. He takes pride in thorough preparation and is prompt at communicating outcomes and advice.

Before joining 1MCB Chambers in April 2016, David worked for a number of years as an in-house advocate at a busy criminal law firm where he was a criminal litigation supervisor, head of the in-house advocacy department and duty solicitor.

Bernadette Smith

Bernadette has a busy practice with a focus on immigration, asylum and judicial review. She is committed to representing publicly funded and vulnerable clients and is experienced in doing so in all areas of her practice.

Bernadette co-edits a free immigration and asylum update (IAU), described as “very useful” by solicitors in the Legal 500 2016. IAU’s aim is to help busy practitioners keep abreast of the latest case law. Sign up by e-mail at

She was involved in the launch of Evolve – Foundation for International Legal Assistance  and in its ongoing work preparing written submissions for criminal appeals and re-sentencing in Uganda.

Before coming to the Bar, Bernadette volunteered in immigration and housing for two and a half years at Lambeth Law Centre. For the final year she worked as a senior immigration caseworker as well as being involved in providing outreach immigration advice to a domestic violence charity.

Prior to pupillage Bernadette developed an interest in restorative justice and mediation whilst volunteering on youth referral order panels for a couple of years as a panel chair, facilitating discussions with young people about reparation and minimising the risk of reoffending.

Nick Bano

Nick Bano specialises in representing homeless people, residential occupiers, and destitute & migrant households in both public law and private law disputes.

Nick has particular expertise in cases where equality rights and social entitlement overlap.  He has been involved in bringing some of the significant recent challenges in this area, including Forward v Aldwyck and London & Quadrant v Patrick (on the applicability of the Public Sector Equality Duty in housing possession claims) and Adesotu v Lewisham (on the County Court’s jurisdiction to consider discrimination challenges in homelessness cases).

Chambers & Partners recommends him as an ‘up and coming’ talent in the social housing field saying ”his thriving practice takes in homelessness appeals, disrepair claims and possession proceedings, among others”.

Vyaj Lovejoy

Vyaj has a multi-disciplinary human rights and public law practice with a focus on immigration and housing. Committed to representing the most vulnerable in society and fighting against injustice and inequality, Vyaj is regularly commended for her exceptional client care skills and dedication.

Vyaj provides expert opinions on immigration law in other areas such as in family law proceedings. She is actively involved in policy and campaigning work in the human rights field and has worked on international human rights law abroad.

Benjamin Hawkin

Ben practises in immigration & asylum, mental health, prison law and public law, with a particular emphasis on human rights issues. He has appeared at every level of the tribunal and court system, representing victims of human rights violations, leaders of political groups, high-ranking military officers, diplomats, terrorists, financiers and long term serving prisoners.

He is ranked as a Leading Junior in The UK Legal 500, which noted that “He wins near-impossible cases by identifying new arguments (2016) and has “specialist knowledge of a range of areas including asylum, deportation and entry clearance” (2015).

Ben has been involved in a number of groundbreaking cases in the Higher Courts, including R (Q and Others) v SSHD [2003] EWCA Civ 364 (challenging the controversial withholding of benefits from asylum seekers), R (Iran) and Others v SSHD [2005] EWCA Civ 982 (the leading case on material errors of law) and ZH (Tanzania) v SSHD [2011] UKSC 4 (the landmark Supreme Court ruling on the rights of children and British citizens).

He is also a member of Amicus, and took part in its work on the Kenny Richey case.

Ben has been the Deputy Head of 1MCB Chambers since 2014.

Shashi Jaisri

Shashi was called to the Bar in 1995 by Lincoln’s Inn and has dedicated his practice to human rights, public and administrative law and civil liberties. He has built a considerable reputation experience in these areas. He has been described as very approachable and thorough in his preparation and attention to detail and, importantly, tactically aware.

He has particular interests in immigration and mental health related issues, appearing regularly in the High Court and Court of Appeal, and is committed to publicly funded work.

With a predominantly science background, Shashi read law at Queen Mary’s College, before completing the Bar Vocational Course.

Shashi is accredited to accept instructions directly from members of the public, through the Bar Council’s Public Access Scheme.