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Gideon Habel

Associate solicitor

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Gideon Habel's Profile Picture

Gideon joined Leigh Day in September 2008 as a trainee solicitor. He qualified as a solicitor in September 2010 and was made an associate solicitor in April 2016. 

Gideon works with managing partner Frances Swaine and is currently engaged in responding to the Solicitors Regulation Authority’s (“SRA”) appeal against the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal’s (“SDT”) decision to clear the firm and its solicitors of all charges arising from the Al Sweady Inquiry. He has a burgeoning interest in professional regulation and discipline (particularly in respect of solicitors) and is also responsible for developing the firm’s new regulatory and disciplinary team.

Since joining Leigh Day, Gideon has worked in high-profile actions in both domestic and international contexts. Between 2008 and 2012, he acted for former Iraqi interpreters who worked with the British Government in its operations in Iraq between 2003 and 2009. The claimants alleged that they (or their relatives) had been left defenceless by their British Government employers against reprisal attacks by militia opposed to the British Government’s presence in Iraq. Tragically, some of these attacks resulted in the murders of our clients’ relatives. Closer to home, in 2010, Gideon assisted Frances Swaine in seeking a new inquest into the death of the former government weapons expert, Dr David Kelly.

Between 2012 and 2014, Gideon assisted Sapna Malik in seeking damages against the Ministry of Defence on behalf of a number of Iraqi civilians who alleged that they had been unlawfully detained and abused by British Armed Forces in Iraq between 2003 and 2009.

Throughout 2015 and until August 2016, Gideon was seconded to work with managing partner Frances Swaine. During this period, Gideon was the lead solicitor on the firm’s internal team tasked with responding to and defending the allegations made in connection with the Al Sweady Inquiry against the firm and three of its solicitors by the SRA. In 2016, the SRA began proceedings against the firm and its three solicitors in the SDT. The case was heard between April and June 2017, at the end of which the firm and its solicitors were cleared of all charges against them. 

On his return to the international department from August 2016, Gideon was the lead solicitor for two Iraqi men, KSU and MRE, whose unlawful detention and abuse claims against the Ministry of Defence were tried by the High Court in March/April 2017. The claims resulted in the first judicial findings against the Ministry of Defence arising out of the misconduct of British soldiers in Iraq.

He previously studied Modern Languages and then Social Anthropology at the University of Cambridge before retraining as a solicitor. He has also volunteered with Reprieve, the Law Centre and the Free Representation Unit.

Gideon is a member of the Association of Regulatory and Disciplinary Lawyers.


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