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Leigh Day represents hundreds of Iraqi civilians in claims against the British Ministry of Defence (MoD) for alleged assaults, unlawful detention, inhuman and degrading treatment, torture and executions by British soldiers in Iraq between 2003 and 2009. Our specialist team has worked on cases arising from the Iraq conflict since 2004, including representing British ex-servicemen and Iraqi interpreters in claims against the MoD for allegedly failing to provide them with adequate protection against the dangers associated with their employment in Iraq following the invasion in 2003.

The most publicised example of abuse by British troops in Iraq is the death of Baha Mousa, an Iraqi hotel receptionist who was tortured to death by British soldiers in Basra in September 2003 , but there is strong evidence that abuse by British Forces was widespread during the conflict. Leigh Day represented Baha Mousa’s family in civil proceedings against the MoD and in 2008 obtained £2.83 million in compensation for his family and nine other men detained and tortured during the same incident.

Leigh Day also represented Baha Mousa’s family at the public inquiry in to his death held from 2008 to 2011, together with Public Interest Lawyers. In his report Inquiry Chair, Sir William Gage, was highly critical of the MoD for systemic failings which he directly implicated in the death of Baha Mousa.

Many of our other clients also make allegations of systemic abuse by British forces, including the use of the “five techniques” (hooding, stress positions, exposure to noise, deprivation of food and sleep), the use of which had been expressly prohibited by parliament in 1972.

Leigh Day have also represented victims of the notorious Camp Breadbasket incident as well as the family of Saeed Shabram, an Iraqi teenage who drowned in May 2003 after British soldiers apprehended him by a river near Basra.

Since 2011, the team, led by partners Sapna Malik and Gene Matthews has successfully resolved compensation claims on behalf of over 250 Iraqi civilians, overcoming the many logistical challenges of litigating claims arising from a war zone.

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