Joshua Kern

Introduction

Joshua is an international criminal law and extradition barrister who also appears frequently as a jury advocate in the Crown Court; he specialises in criminal cases with an international or transnational dimension. Joshua is registered on both the International Criminal Court’s (ICC’s) and Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia’s List of Assistants to Counsel and is a Member of the American Bar Association’s International Criminal Justice Standards Advisory Group. He leads 9 Bedford Row’s initiative on the impact of Brexit on human rights and criminal justice reform in the UK, and is qualified to receive instructions directly from the public.

Background and expertise

As defence counsel, Joshua has made numerous submissions resulting in the dismissal of charges through lack of evidence or abuse of process and he has appeared as counsel successfully in judicial review proceedings. Joshua has successfully defended both as a junior and a led junior in complex extradition cases involving a political dimension. Joshua also has experience in complex fraud, bribery, corruption and money laundering cases and he has experience of representing high profile individuals for whom reputation management is a significant concern.

At the international criminal tribunals, Joshua has experience as a member of defence teams at the ICC (Kenyatta), ICTY (Prlić), and ECCC (Ieng Sary). He completed ICCA Vulnerable Witness training in 2018.

Joshua currently lectures on international criminal law, including at the National University of Ireland in Galway in 2019 and Salzburg Law School’s Sound of ICL symposium in 2018. He lectures annually at Birkbeck University on the history of the international criminal tribunals. Through 2018 and into 2019, he has published on the topic of ICC jurisdiction over nationals of non-states parties as well as on issues relating to the ICC’s Preliminary Examination of the Situation in Palestine. Joshua represents as counsel a coalition of civil society organisations granted amicus curiae standing in December 2019’s landmark ICC Appeals Chamber hearings on the interests of justice in the Situation in Afghanistan.

Joshua has successfully lobbied Interpol for the deletion of data, including Red Notices, from its systems – and he is well versed with Interpol's constitutional framework and institutional structure.

Prior to transferring to the Bar, Joshua practised as an associate with Herbert Smith, an international law firm where he worked principally on civil litigation and international arbitration matters. After training in the City, he practised international and transnational criminal law (including extradition, mutual legal assistance and international administrative law) at the ad hoc international criminal tribunals and as a solicitor with BCL Burton Copeland in London. He is also admitted to the roll of solicitors in Hong Kong and has experience of international media and PR in a litigation context.

International Criminal Law

Situation in Afghanistan

Counsel to a coalition of human rights organisations granted leave to submit amicus curiae observations in the Appeals Chamber hearings on the interests of justice in December 2019.

Situation in Palestine

Instructed by The Lawfare Project and UK Lawyers for Israel to submit Article 15 communications to the Office of the Prosecutor on issues relating to jurisdiction, complementarity and the interests of justice.

Prosecutor v Uhuru Kenyatta – ICC

Legal Assistant on Uhuru Kenyatta Defence team

Case 002 (Ieng Sary) – ECCC

Legal Consultant on Ieng Sary Defence team

Prosecutor v Jadranko Prlić (ICTY)

Legal Assistant on Prlić Defence team

Extradition and Mutual Legal Assistance

Poland v C, 2019

Requested Person wanted to serve a sentence of 3 years 6 months in Poland for offences including assault and theft discharged from two EAWs

UK v K, 2019

Junior alone. Import extradition from the Netherlands where a UK EAW warrant alleging historic sex offences raised questions of abuse of process under Dutch law.

Germany v S, 2018

Junior alone. Requested person discharged from German EAW alleging aggravated burglaries of jewellers.

UNAOIL 2017

Led by Steven Kay QC. The allegations against Unaoil relate to claims of corruption and bid-rigging in the global oil and gas industry. The SFO made a mutual legal assistance request to the Monégasque authorities and carried out a raid of Unaoil’s premises. Extradition from Monaco of S. Ahsani was refused on dual criminality grounds.

R v N, 2017

Case dismissed as a result of an abuse of process arising from the UK’s failure to honour its international obligations with respect to modern slavery.

Georgia v Kezerashvili, 2016

Led by Hugo Keith QC (instructed by Michael Drury CMG of BCL Solicitors) in extradition proceedings at Westminster Magistrates’ Court, in a case involving the multiple extradition requests for David Kezerashvili, formerly the Defence Minister of Georgia.

Read more Extradition and Mutual Legal Assistance

Serious Crime

R v H, 2018

Junior Alone. Conspiracy charge dismissed at half time as no case to answer under Galbraith.

R v N, 2017

Junior Alone. Case dismissed as a result of an abuse of process arising from the UK’s failure to honour its international obligations with respect to modern slavery.

“...tenacious, diligent, and robust advocate with excellent forensic and drafting skills”

Module Icon

PROFILE: Joshua Kern

“...tenacious, diligent, and robust advocate with excellent forensic and drafting skills”

From a tier one solicitor

Year called

2014

Specialisms

Crime

Module Icon

Confiscation / POCA

Module Icon

Financial Crime

Module Icon

Fraud, Bribery & Corruption

Module Icon

Sexual offences

International

Module Icon

Crisis Management

Module Icon

Financial Crime

Module Icon

Fraud, Bribery & Corruption

Module Icon

Immigration

Financial and Corporate law

Module Icon

Corporate Offences

Extradition

Module Icon

Extradition

Direct access

Yes

Contact

020 7489 2727

Education

Modern History, University of Oxford (academic scholar).

Memberships

Law Society, Honourable Society of the Inner Temple

Defence Extradition Lawyers Forum

International Defence Associates

Appointments

CPS Panel (Grade 1)

ICC List of Assistants to Counsel

American Bar Association’s International Criminal Justice Standards Advisory Group

Download Profile