Personal profile

Research interests

I came to academia in 2021 after a 25-year career in journalism reporting on justice issues.

My research interests span criminal justice, social justice and journalism.

I have a long-term commitment to miscarriages of justice, prisoners' rights, social justice and access to justice and legal aid.

Over the years, I have written regularly for the Guardian, Observer (, Independent and Independent on Sunday ( as well as the Times, magazines and specialist journals.

I am twice winner of the Bar Council's journalist of the year (2005 and 2015), winner of the inaugural Halsbury Law award for journalism (2013) and was shortlisted for the Criminal Justice Alliance's journalist of the year award (2016). 

I am the founder/ editor of the Justice Gap ( - an online magazine about 'the law and justice - and the difference between the two'. The Justice Gap has a print magazine, Proof

The Justice Gap news reporting scheme is run by a collaboration between four universities: Cardiff, Manchester, University, College, London and Glasgow.

I’ve written a number of books, including Guilty Until Proven Innocent: the crisis in our justice system (Biteback, 2018) described by the Secret Barrister as ‘a no-holds-barred insight into the serious and often overlooked miscarriages of justice that stalk our broken justice system'. The journalist Catherine Baksi called it a book that 'informs, shocks and demands a response. It demands justice.'

My most recent book was called Justice in the Time of Austerity (Bristol University Press, 2021), and was written with an academic at Cardiff University, Daniel Newman. We conducted over original 200 interviews with people as they went through the justice system over the course of one year in a variety of settings from food banks, asylum seeker destitution services, homeless shelters to MP surgeries and court waiting rooms.

This book, according to  Shami Chakrabarti, is a 'call to arms'. 'If you are a tribute of the people who has ever poured scorn on activist lawyers, I dare you to read this. If you are a lawyer, or even even a concerned citizen, who has never felt comfortable with the activist tag, it just may tempt you to reconsider.'

I am involved in a number of justice intitaives. In June 2022, I was appointed special adviser to the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Miscarriages of Justice and run its secretariat with Glyn Maddocks KC. This work is being arranged under the Future of Justice Project and includes the new Westminister Commission on Foresnic Science. You can read about our work on the Justice Gap here and in the Times here

I am a trustee (and former campaigns director) of the Legal Action Group which campaigns for access to justice on behalf of people and communities who would otherwise by denied. LAG is 50 years' old this year.  

I am also a patron of Hackney Community Law Centre; and on the advisory board of the legal charity APPEAL which investigates miscarrages of justice.


I am the author of a number of books including:




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