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Mau Mau Litigation Case

Simon Myerson QC heads the team representing the growing number of claimants seeking damages for personal injury caused by the agents of the British Colonial Administration in Kenya.

Simon Myerson QCAndrew HaslamSophie Mitchell 






Members of St Pauls Chambers, Simon Myerson QC, Andrew Haslam and Sophie Mitchell have been instructed to represent the growing number of claimants seeking damages for personal injuries caused by repeated assaults perpetrated by employees and agents of the British Colonial Administration in Kenya when they were detained in screening centres, prisons, detention camps and under a programme known as 'villagisation'.  The assualts took place during the course of the State of Emergency declared by the Colonial Administration in the face of the uprising of African resistance to colonial rule in Kenya. The events with which this claim is concerned took place between 1952 and 1961.

Simon is leading the team, which additionally consists of another Silk and Mary Ruck and Sally Hatfield from his Manchester Chambers. Andrew is the junior responsible for identifying any criminal acts and Sophie is going to assist the solicitors, Tandem Law, in Kenya on a two month placement, before returning to work on the case in the UK. The team has already been to Kenya, where their visit made national news.


Lawyers representing Mau Mau war victims are now considering enlisting the support of the Commonwealth Foreign Office in London to hasten their case amid fears that it could drag until all the witnesses die.

Lawyer Simon Myerson QC told journalists in Nairobi that they would consider mounting a political campaign to put pressure on the British Government to acknowledge the wrongs it committed during the State of Emergency in Kenya where many people were tortured.

“If the Commonwealth Foreign Office in Britain is prepared to deal with this case sensibly then that is how it should carry out even if it means mounting a political campaign,” Mr Myerson QC said.

“And the political campaign is best mounted via the Commonwealth because the Commonwealth means a great deal to both the British Government and the Queen herself.”

Mr Myerson, who is in the country to meet the Mau Mau victims as they seek to tighten their case, also asked the Kenya Government to lobby other Commonwealth nations to support their cause.

He noted that by acknowledging that wrongs were committed, the British Government would bring psychological relief to the victims who continue to be haunted by the traumatic experiences they went through.


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