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Military law

Our solicitors and advocates provide specialist advice to members of the armed forces, from the service police interview stage through to any hearing in military court.

Free legal advice and assistance at police interview

Anyone interviewed under caution by the Special Investigation Branch (SIB) or Service Police as a suspect, whether in the UK or elsewhere, has the right to free legal advice during any interview. Service Police investigations are subject to the safeguards of The Police & Criminal Evidence Act 1984, including free Advice & Representation at police interview.

An interview under caution is part of a formal process of investigation. We strongly advise anyone being investigated or interviewed to take up their right to free legal advice. Our experienced representatives can attend at Service Police interviews; advise on the evidence disclosed by the Police and assist suspects in the interview.

We provide representation in interview at any time of day or night. This ensures that your interests are protected from the outset.

Many SIB and Service Police interviews are conducted on a voluntary basis by prior arrangement. Contact us before the interview to enable us to arrange representation.

Our lawyers regularly attend to represent clients in interview and are experienced in advising on the full range of criminal and military offences. In addition to interviews in the UK, we have attended to represent clients based in Cyprus, Gibraltar, Germany, Estonia and Kosovo.

Representation

Following any investigation and subject to eligibility under the Armed Forces Criminal Legal Aid Scheme, an experienced Advocate will attend to assist with advice and to represent you in the proceedings.

We can assist you under the Armed Forces Criminal Legal Aid Scheme (subject to means tested eligibility under JSP838).

Meet our specialist military law barristers and advocates

Simon Perkins, defence barrister
Simon Perkins, Military Law barrister

Simon Perkins, Barrister

Simon has 18 years’ experience in assisting clients with Court Martial issues, and he is supported by a team of experienced and litigators and advocates.

Simon has developed his interest in and knowledge of psychiatric issues arising from military service.

Summary Appeal Court

If you are a member of the Armed Forces who elects to appeal against a summary finding before your Commanding Officer, we can advise and represent you throughout the appeal process.

Court Martial

When a member of the Armed Forces elects, or is directed for trial before a Court Martial, we assist by preparing the case from an early stage, including:

  • preparing and submitting the required defence case statement
  • contacting and obtaining statements from potential defence witnesses
  • identifying, justifying and commissioning expert evidence where appropriate
  • drafting legal arguments
  • providing a full advocacy service at each hearing before the Court Martial

In the event of a finding of guilt, we advise upon appeal and draft the necessary documents in support of appeal proceedings. If permission to appeal is granted, we will prepare the paperwork and appear before the Court Martial Appeal Court on your behalf.

Service Civilian Court

When a person subject to Military Law, such as a dependent child, is dealt with before the Service Civilian Court (SSC), we provide the same service as that for Court Martial cases, including our full range of advisory and advocacy services.

Support at a time of your choosing

We recognise that service life can be unpredictable and that working hours are highly flexible. We offer our Court Martial clients, and their Assisting Officers, meetings and case preparation conferences outside the core working day and at weekends.

Instruct a specialist in military law defence

Contact our military law team

Notable cases

R v JH (Military law – serious violence)

Advocacy team

Simon Perkins

About the case

Successful defence of a Royal Marine accused of assaulting no fewer than three senior naval ratings whilst ashore in Japan.

R v MR (Military law – serious violence)

Advocacy team

Simon Perkins

About the case

Successful Court Martial defence of a Warrant Officer accused of drunken violence in the Mess.

R v IP (Military law – serious sexual offences)

Advocacy team

Simon Perkins

About the case

Successful Court Martial defence of a soldier facing allegations of sexual assault.

R v CO (Drugs, PTSD)

Advocacy team

Simon Perkins

About the case

Conspiracy to Supply Class A. Whilst this was a Guilty Plea significant work was done to mitigate sentence involving psychiatric enquiries in defendant’s PTSD consequent upon Army service in Northern Ireland.

R v CJ (Military law – dishonesty)

Advocacy team

Simon Perkins

About the case

An allegation of theft from stores and subsequent sale of items on EBay. The case required detailed analysis of several hundred alleged eBay transactions. The key point was that deficiencies in Army stock control systems leading to short cuts in paper recording systems created the impression of stock deficiencies when none existed. Case was stopped by the Judge Advocate when it emerged that the Prosecution could not prove any stock was missing.