Suzanne Gower

Suzanne is an experienced solicitor specialising in Criminal Defence Work. She has worked for 10 years in Legal Aid practices in London, Bolton, Manchester and Liverpool, representing clients as a litigator and an advocate in all stages of the criminal justice system from the police station through trial to appeals. She qualified as a Duty Solicitor under the Law Society’s Criminal Litigation Accreditation Scheme and also obtained her Higher Rights of Audience to appear as a Solicitor Advocate in criminal cases at the Crown Court.

Suzanne has also volunteered as an investigator in Oklahoma City and at the Centre for Equal Justice in New Orleans working on death penalty cases, both pre-trial and appeals.

Suzanne has spent the last three years working as Senior Case Officer on the team who represented 22 of the families of the Hillsborough Disaster in the inquests which returned the historic verdict that the 96 victims had been unlawfully killed. 

Suzanne has an LL.M in International and European Human Rights Law from the Netherlands Institute of Human Rights at Utrecht University and was awarded the Max Van Der Stoel Prize for postgraduate research in the field of Human Rights by Tilburg University.

Suzanne is Managing Director of the Centre and is based in London.



Emily Bolton

IN 1999, Emily was awarded an Equal Justice Fellowship and later a Soros Advocacy Fellowship to establish Innocence Project New Orleans (IPNO), a non-profit law office providing legal representation to the wrongfully convicted in the United States. IPNO grew from a staff of one to nine during her tenure, and has so far freed 27 innocent prisoners. Returning to the UK in 2004, she helped develop the UK legal action charity Reprieve. In 2007, working as a UK solicitor, Emily brought a wrongful conviction case to the Court of Appeal via the Criminal Cases Review Commission, as a test of the proposed Centre for Criminal Appeals methodology. The Court quashed the conviction in 2010. Emily received an Unltd* Level 1 Award and a Shackleton Leadership Award to work on establishing the Centre.

Emily is the Centre's Legal Director and Founder and works on challenges to unsafe convictions. She is based in the South West.


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Naima Sakande

Naima manages the Women's Justice Initiative at the Centre. Before joining in December 2017, she managed programmes for young women affected by gangs in London at the youth charity, Leap Confronting Conflict. She also spent a year working on pre-trial criminal cases as an investigator for the Bronx Defenders, a pro-bono public defence law firm in New York City. She is a trustee of the charity Women in Prison who campaign for radical alternatives to prison for women in the justice system. She is also the creator and host of the podcast, Third Culture, which explores the heritage and stories of people with mixed identities. Naima has a B.A. in International Development from Yale University. 



Abigail Wheatcroft

Abigail is an investigator at the Centre and is also responsible for processing initial requests for assistance. Prior to joining the Centre in January 2017, Abigail worked at the charity Next Link, providing domestic abuse support services to vulnerable women. Before this, she spent 8 months interning at the Louisiana Capital Assistance Center, working on pre-trial death penalty cases. Abigail has a BA in History from the School of Oriental and African Studies.



James Burley

James is an investigator at the Centre and is also responsible for communications and resource development. Prior to joining the Centre in March 2016, he interned for 3 months at the Louisiana Capital Assistance Center in New Orleans, helping to investigate pre-trial capital cases. Before this James volunteered part-time for 6 months on the death penalty team at Reprieve, worked at Skoob Books, and was news editor of London Student. He has a BA in philosophy from University College London and holds an Advanced Professional Certificate in Investigative Practice.


Board of Trustees


Glyn Maddocks

Glyn Maddocks is a UK solicitor who has worked on wrongful conviction cases for over 20 years. Through his work on appeal cases Glyn has developed a deep understanding and knowledge of the processes and procedures of the Criminal Cases Review Commission and the Court of Appeal and in obtaining compensation for victims of miscarriage of justice from the Ministry of Justice. In 2005, in recognition of his work over a twelve-year period representing Paul Blackburn, who had his conviction quashed after serving nearly 25 years, Glyn was named Welsh Lawyer of the Year. Glyn is the founding Trustee of the Centre.



Joe Hingston

Joe Hingston is a practicing barrister in England and Wales, acting exclusively for the defence. He also assists in the representation of individuals facing the death penalty and consults on various death penalty projects with the UK charity Reprieve. Before being called to the Bar, Joe worked for a number years in the United States assisting in the representation of individuals facing the death penalty in America’s Deep South, leading the investigation on behalf of scores of defendants at all stages of the capital trial process. Joe is the Chair of the Board of Directors of the Centre.



Andrew Donovan

Andrew Donovan is a former practising solicitor, and compliance expert. Prior to joining the SRA Andy worked in civil litigation in private practice for a little under 6 years. Outside of the Compliance Office Andy also holds a fee-paid judicial post, sits on fitness to practise hearings for the General Medical Council’s Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service and is a Board Member of Cilex Regulation.




Tom works as a legal officer and barrister at the Royal College of Nursing. Prior to joining the RCN he practiced as a barrister in various chambers, and was a research assistant at Harvard University and Law School.




Until recently, Rebecca was a Senior Associate at Chadbourne & Parke LLP, specialising in insurance and reinsurance. Prior to that, she worked in dispute resolution at Denton Wilde Sapte. She is now at home looking after her young son.




Chris is Counsel in the London office of US firm, WilmerHale. He specialises in white collar crime, including allegations of fraud, bribery and corruption, insider dealing or money laundering.


Advisory Group

The Centre is supported by an Advisory Group who provide us with a wealth of experience and every-day advice

  • Sophie Walker (barrister, Director of the Centre from 2014 to August 2016) 
  • Kat Craig (Reprieve)
  • Peter Wilcock QC (Garden Court Chambers)
  • Calvin Duncan (former wrongfully convicted prisoner)
  • Laurie Elks (former Criminal Cases Review Commissioner)
  • Kim Evans (former Met Police officer, criminal defence specialist)
  • Francis Fitzgibbon QC (criminal barrister, Doughty Street Chambers)
  • Simon Ford (producer of Rough Justice television series)
  • Rikki Garg (prison law specialist, Chair of Prisoners Advice Service)
  • Stephen Heaton (researcher, Staff Director for the Innocence Project at University of East Anglia),
  • Carolyn Hoyle (Oxford Centre for Criminology Miscarriages of Justice specialist)
  • Laura Janes (prison, public law and appeals specialist)
  • David Martin-Sperry (barrister specialising in miscarriage of justice cases)
  • Mark McDonald QC (criminal appeals specialist, founder of London Innocence Project)
  • Gareth Peirce (lawyer for Birmingham Six and Guildford Four)
  • Stephen Pollard (WilmerHale, criminal litigation specialist)
  • Julie Price (academic, Cardiff University Innocence Project)
  • Christopher Riley (Sheffield Hallam University)
  • Jon Robins (legal journalist and Justice Gap editor)
  • Lucy Scott-Moncrieff (Mental health law  specialist)
  • Louise Shorter (investigative journalist, Inside Justice)
  • Paul Taylor (criminal barrister, author of Taylor on Appeals)
  • Brian Thornton (journalist and academic)
  • Michael Zander (Professor Emeritus at LSE and Member of Royal Commission on Criminal Justice)
  • Paramjit Ahluwalia (barrister, Garden Court Chambers)
  • Bob Woffinden (investigative journalist)
  • Clive Stafford Smith (attorney, founder of Reprieve)
  • Former UK prisoners and their family members, who prefer to remain anonymous