Gareth Peirce

 

Gareth Peirce is a senior partner at Birnberg Peirce and Partners. She is renowned for her work defending victims of miscarriages of justice, including Judith Ward, the Guildford Four and the Birmingham Six.  Born in 1940, Gareth was educated at Cheltenham Ladies’ College before studying at Oxford University. She then moved to the United States as a journalist and became a keen observer of the civil rights movement, witnessing the revolutionary changes in the American society of the 1960s. She returned to the UK in 1970, and studied for a postgraduate degree in law at the London School of Economics, joining law firm Benedict Birnberg in 1974. Gareth is well known for her privacy and modesty. Despite being featured in a film telling the story of the Guildford Four, she openly admits that she has never seen it and refuses to accept any accolades in relation to the title. When Gareth was awarded a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for services to justice in 1999, she requested its withdrawal. Fearless and determined, her professional practice as a solicitor has been devoted to protecting human rights and those who are vulnerable in the legal system including, more recently, Guantanamo Bay detainees and the family of Jean Charles de Menezes. She has also represented the editor-in-chief of the WikiLeaks portal, Julian Assange. In 2012, Gareth released a book Dispatches from the Dark Side: on Torture and the Death of Justice, in which she shares her views on the criminal justice system in the UK.