Barrister David Hughes

David Hughes

Year of call: 1997  


“Knowledgeable in judicial reviews and a wide range of constitutional matters.”

Legal 500 2016



In addition to his practice at the Anglo-Welsh Bar, David Hughes maintains an active practice in Gibraltar. His practice on the Rock is largely in public law and defamation.

For nearly 10 years, David practised full-time in Gibraltar, as a member of a small but respected high-street firm. He had a wide-ranging practice, encompassing personal injury work, landlord & tenant (often involving social housing) and contractual/commercial litigation through to significant public law disputes. He also had an active criminal practice.

David has appeared in many of the Rock’s leading Constitutional cases. He was a frequent advocate before the Rock’s Court of Appeal, and twice appeared before the Privy Council.

In 2007, David returned to his native Cardiff, from where he also practices. However, he has continued to advise on Gibraltar cases and to argue in the Gibraltar courts when necessary.

David authored an article in the Commonwealth Lawyer, dealing with the history of constitutional litigation in Gibraltar. He is a consultant at a Gibraltar law firm, and maintains a full practicing certificate on the Rock.

Offshore & International

Offshore & International

Offshore & International Cases

  • R (C) –v- Minister for Social Security – for the Claimant in proceedings before the Gibraltar courts, relating to the application of Kennedy in that jurisdiction. C challenged a refusal to pay him a social security benefit.
  • Benzaquen –v- Canessa – advised a Gibraltar lawyer in defamation proceedings, obtaining an apology and costs.
  • Unite the Union –v- Sisarello – advised and appeared for the defendant in a dispute re the enforceability of “gagging clauses” in a severance agreement.
  • Israel –v- AG, R (Israel) –v- AG and AG –v- Israel – for I, in a series of proceedings involving a government owned flat. The magistrates’ court made an order in criminal proceedings ordering I to give up possession of the flat. The first claim brought by I was for Constitutional relief, to prevent this order being enforced. That claim was compromised in I’s favour. The second proceedings sought a judicial review of decisions made in the housing allocation process. The third involved defending conventional possession proceedings. Both the second and third proceedings were also compromised.
  • Dxon –v- Govt of Spain [2007-09] Gib LR 244. For D, who agued successfully that the absence of rules governing the hearing of appeals against orders for surrender under Gibraltar’s European Arrest Warrant Act meant that his appeal had to be deemed to have been allowed.
  • Shimidzu –v- A-G for Gibraltar & Fabre [2007-09] Gib LR 137 – for S, concerning the elements of misfeasance in public office.
  • Dixon –v- Superintendent of H.M. Prison Gibraltar [2007-09] Gib LR 12 – for D, on a challenge to the Gibraltar legislature’s competence to pass the Rock’s European Arrest Warrant Act.
  • Gonzalez –v- Collado & Collado [2005-06] Gib LR 257. For C, successfully resisting a contention that she was estopped from seeking to evict her daughter and son-in-law from her home.
  • A-G for Gibraltar –v- Abecasis & Vinet [2005-06] Gib LR 228 – for Ds, seeking to resist eviction from government-owned flat.
  • Attorney-General for Gibraltar –v- Shimidzu (Berllaque intervening) [2005] UKPC 26, [2005] 1 WLR 3335. For respondent (led by John Leighton Williams QC) who had successfully argued that the costs regime for trials on indictment was unconstitutional.
  • Fisher –v- Small [2005-06] Gib LR 1 – for D (led by John Leighton Williams QC), successfully disputing the Gibraltar Court’s jurisdiction to deal with a claim arising out of an accident in Spain against an individual with category 2 residence in Gibraltar.
  • Rocca –v- Rocca [2003-04] Gib LR 349 – successfully argued that the Supreme Court of Gibraltar could attach a power of arrest to an injunction made in exercise of its ordinary jurisdiction (as opposed to under specific domestic violence legislation).
  • Rojas -v- Berllaque (A-G for Gibraltar intervening) [2003] UKPC 76, [2004] 1 WLR 201. Acting for claimant in successful challenge to the constitutionality of Gibraltar’s jury system of all-male juries. Appeared alone before Supreme Court  (successfully) and Court of Appeal (reported at [2001-02] Gib LR 252), led by Lord Pannick QC in the Privy Council.
  • In the matter of an application to the Chief Justice pursuant to the Supreme Court Rules, Rule 2 [2001-02] Gib LR 329 – an application to the court to rule whether CFA’s were lawful in Gibraltar, court held that they were. Made written submissions in support of their legality.
  • Goodwin –v- Topgem & others [2001-02] Gib LR 316, Supreme Court of Gibraltar (equivalent to High Court and Crown Court) – No blanket PII attaching to information obtained by the factories inspectorate in carrying out its function.
  • R (Jurado) –v- Manager of King George V Hospital [2001-02] Gib LR 235, Supreme Court – absence of legal aid before the Mental Health Review Tribunal unconstitutional.
  • R –v- Shimidzu & Martinez [2001-02] Gib LR 106, Supreme Court – disclosure of complaints against a police officer not yet adjudicated upon ordered. Police Training Manual also held to be disclosable.
  • R –v- Shimidzu [2001-02] Gib LR 100, Supreme Court – Court could not vary bail conditions imposed by the magistrates’ court in order to preserve possible costs arguments.
  • R –v- Stipendiary Magistrate [2001-02] Gib LR 86, Supreme Court – for claimant on an application to stay serious criminal charges on the ground that Gibraltar’s criminal legal aid scheme made a fair trial impossible. Led to first increase in criminal legal aid rates in 20 years.
  • Menich –v- Mathews [2001-02] Gib LR 58, Supreme Court – for claimant, defendant who had previously admitted liability estopped from pleading a limitation defence.
  • Parody –v- R [2001-02] Gib LR 13, Supreme Court – Fair trial requirement of Gibraltar Constitution required that the magistrates’ court give reasons when convicting.
  • Gaiviso -v- Commissioner of Police & others [1999-00] Gib LR 243, Supreme Court – For claimant, deals with duty of care owed by police officers to detainees at police station in carrying out identifications.
  • R -v- Superintendent of HM Prison Gibraltar, ex parte Chichon [1999-00] Gib LR 143, Supreme Court – For claimant, on an application for judicial review by an inmate of the prison to whom the Superintendent denied prescription drugs and failed to provide medical examinations as required by the prison rules. Superintendent of Prison held to have failed to take proper care of the claimant in that he had failed to ensure he was seen by a doctor whilst in solitary confinement, and failed to discuss his behaviour with the prison doctor. Superintendent also held to have not done enough to ensure the claimant received adequate treatment before his release from prison.
  • R -v- Diani [1999-00] Gib LR 113, Supreme Court – For defendant in criminal case, challenging the constitutionality of statutory provision denying successful defendants the right to recover their costs.
  • Diani -v- Attorney-General [1999-00] Gib LR 107, Court of Appeal – For Appellant, challenging the refusal of legal aid by Supreme Court judge, and challenging same judge’s refusal to allow counsel to withdraw.
  • Pannell -v- R [1997-98] Gib LR 254, Court of Appeal (not appearing below). Successful appeal against conviction, evidence only admissible with defendant’s consent having been called without his consent having been sought. Argued only 4 months after admission to the Gibraltar Bar.


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