Alex practises in extradition, immigration, INTERPOL and international matters.
He was formerly Head of EU Office at Fair Trials International (2012-16) and has a great deal of experience in European law from prior work at the Court of Justice of the EU and public interest litigation at the European Court of Human Rights.
Alex regularly acts in European Arrest Warrant (EAW) matters before Westminster Magistrates Court and the High Court, for both judicial authorities and the defence. He is on the CPS Specialist Extradition Panel at Level 2. He has a lot of experience working with foreign justice systems and draws on access to a network of trusted working relationships with over 150 European criminal lawyers. He is a co-author of the European Criminal Bar Association’s handbook on EAW defence.
Immigration & Asylum
Alex accepts instructions in matters before the First-tier Tribunal, Upper Tribunal and High Court, including appeals, error of law hearings, emergency injunctions, substantive judicial review matters and unlawful detention. He has experience handling a range of delicate asylum cases involving unaccompanied minors, sexual orientation claims, human trafficking and religious persecution. He also appears regularly in appeals on standard immigration and entry clearance cases.
INTERPOL red notice work (including public access)
Alex has unique experience in INTERPOL ‘red notice’ matters. From 2012 to 2016 he led Fair Trials’ INTERPOL campaign and contributed to recent reforms of the organisation. He has made numerous challenges to red notices before the Commission for the Control of INTERPOL’s Files, both at Fair Trials and in private practice. He has given expert evidence on the topic before the Federal Court of Canada and has been quoted as an “expert” on the subject by the Council of Europe (2017). Alex accepts instructions in this area on a public access basis directly from clients overseas, where appropriate.
International, NGO & Consultancy work
With a background international human rights law, Alex is regularly called upon to work in international teams together with foreign lawyers in cross-border cases. He has been instructed by lawyers from different countries to assist with advice and drafting of arguments for European Court of Human Rights cases and undertakes consultancy work for international organisations, e.g. the UN.
Assisted the foreign lawyer with submissions successfully arguing a violation of Article 1, First Protocol (disproportionate retention of physical assets pending criminal proceedings, and ineffective judicial oversight).
– Successfully raised a new point of construction of s 20 of the Extradition Act 2003 in light of Article 4a(1)(c) of the EAW Framework Decision and the EU law principle of conforming interpretation to uphold otherwise flawed decision.
Successfully prosecuted case in a complex financial crime case involving 2,981 unlawful banking and fraud offences (appeal dismissed at permission stage).
Successfully prosecuted human trafficking matter involving novel forum issues relating to alleged linked trials of co-defendants in the UK.
Successfully prosecuted unusual case raising issues of specialty and and the application of Article 8 to those transiting through the UK.
- Successful submissions for the disclosure and cancellation of a green and/or red notice in relation to money-laundering proceedings against an Italian national
- Assistance to Ukrainian and English solicitors with submissions challenging an INTERPOL red notice based on a private dispute affecting a Russian businessman.
- Successful challenge to a controversial INTERPOL red notice based on Egyptian terrorism conviction, resulting in unprecedented finding of Article 2 violation due to the red notice ultimately being founded on torture evidence.
- Instructed by Fair Trials (pro bono) to draft third-party intervention on the European Arrest Warrant and conditions in European prisons.
- Error of law ruling recognising statutory change in the date of assessment for appeals against refusal of entry clearance applications (pending publication)
- Successful humanitarian protection appeal (Albania) based on risk to a former male child victim of trafficking for forced labour, despite negative NRM decision.
- Successful asylum appeal (Albania) based on risk to a victim of trafficking for sexual exploitation, achieved with psychiatric evidence and no NRM decision.
Recent Publications / Seminars
- Panellist in INTERPOL seminar at Matrix, Defence Extradition Lawyers Forum, 22 November 2018
– “The UK’s failure to refer questions to the Court of Justice of the EU”, guest lecture for the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights, Brussels (December 2018)
– “Guest post: Three issues with the arrest warrant for Carles Puigdemont”, Free Movement, November 2017 (available here)
– “Legal aid and negotiated justice: European perspectives”: presentation to the UN / USAID Regional Conference on Legal Aid, Tbilisi, Georgia, September 2017.
– “How to defend a European Arrest Warrant case” (general content and INTERPOL / SIS II alerts chapter), European Criminal Bar Association Handbook, October 2017, with Vania Costa Ramos, Edward Grange, Rebecca Niblock and Jodie Blackstock (available here).
- 'INTERPOL "wanted" alerts: using them as evidence and making them go away', Free Movement, 10 May 2017 (available here)
– “Echoes of Kadi: reforms to internal remedies at INTERPOL”, EJILTalk! (blog of the European Journal of International Law), 20 January 2017 (available here), cited by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (Legal Affairs and Human Rights Committee) report on INTERPOL.
– “Rights of the defence under Article 6(3) ECHR”, guest lecture to prosecutors, judges and lawyers for the Academy of European Law, Strasbourg, November 2017.
– “The Roadmap Directives in UK criminal proceedings: now and post-Brexit”, Archbold Review, August 2016 (available here).
– French: near-native standard orally and in writing (including legal)
– Italian: business proficiency
– Spanish: business proficiency
– Russian: intermediate level
PROFILE: Alex Tinsley
Human rights law
020 7489 2727
BA Italian & French (University College London)
Graduate Diploma in Law & Bar Vocational Course (University of Law)
Legal Experts Advisory Panel (LEAP)
Defence Extradition Lawyers Forum
Editorial board of the New Journal of European Criminal Law (since 2014)
European Criminal Bar Association: member of the Human Rights Committee
Co-chair (with Dr Anna Oehmichen) of the LEAP Working Group on the CJEU
CPS Specialist Extradition Advocate Panel (Level 2)