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Matthew Renshaw


Matthew Renshaw is a partner in the international department.

Corporate accountability

Matthew has been a solicitor in Leigh Day’s international department since November 2012, specialising in corporate accountability cases. He became a partner in 2022.

Legal expertise

Matthew studied Philosophy & Psychology before training as a solicitor, and has completed an LLM in International Human Rights Law at University College, London. On qualification, Matthew spent six months working at the Office of Capital Defence Counsel in Jackson, Mississippi defending indigent persons charged with death penalty eligible offences. He then worked at Bail for Immigration Detainees, helping to secure the release from detention of asylum seekers and migrants. 

Since 2012 Matthew has spent much of his time working on behalf of Nigerian individuals and communities in claims involving allegations of environmental harm caused by Shell’s operations in the Niger Delta. This includes working on a claim brought on behalf of the Bodo community which resolved in 2014 and working on the Ogale and Bille jurisdictional challenges on which the Supreme Court ruled in February 2021.

Matthew has also worked extensively on claims concerning allegations of human rights abuses against artisanal miners at British-owned mines, including in Mozambique (in claims against Gemfields Limited) and Tanzania (in claims against Petra Diamonds Limited).

Matthew specialises in seeking to hold British companies to account for serious human rights violations and environmental damage that occurs in other countries.



News Article
Bille Dead Mangroves 4
International Oil Shell

Breakthrough for Nigerian community in Shell pollution case as High Court orders the oil giant to disclose documents it has been withholding for more than two years

The High Court has ordered Shell Plc (the UK based parent company) and its Nigerian subsidiary, Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC) to disclose documents that the court says could relate to the company’s liability for oil spills between 2011 to 2013 that devastated the Bille community’s land.

Blog Post
Oil damage Niger Delta
Shell Oil Niger Delta

‘Selling out Nigeria’ – SOMO’s investigation of Shell’s divestment in the Niger Delta

Partner,  Matthew Renshaw and Alice Grist from Leigh Day’s international department examine concerns that Shell’s plans to sell off its Nigerian oil business could result in it leaving the Niger Delta without addressing years of chronic oil pollution in the region.

News Article
Crater To Store Oil, Dug By Shell At Ogale

High Court rules Nigerian communities can bring landmark human rights claims against Shell for oil pollution

The High Court has ruled that 13,000 Nigerian fishermen and farmers at the centre of a major oil pollution case against Shell can bring claims for breaches of their right to a clean environment under Nigerian constitutional law. If the case succeeds at trial, it will be the first time in legal history that a UK multinational will have been found to have breached a communities’ right to a clean environment.