Rhona has been a criminal solicitor for over twenty years specialising in complex homicide cases, extradition work, advise and representation in international Mutual Legal Assistance cases, serious fraud and financial crime including allegations of off-shore money laundering, ‘boiler room‘ fraud and terrorism-related matters.
As part of a proactive defence approach Rhona has travelled to Egypt, Turkey, Romania, Belgium, Germany, Spain and Switzerland to speak to witnesses and gather evidence for cases.
She is also experienced in cases with a mental health component, or where defendants are particularly vulnerable because of their age, learning disability or neuro diversity or for some other reason.
Rhona is one of only 5 defence solicitors recommended in Chambers and Partners for expertise in protest defence. She has defended anti-war, environmental and climate crisis activists and campaigners against human rights abuses and has acted as an advisor to the Black Protest Legal Support Group.
Rhona’s appeal practice is often in the news. She currently represents Charles and Diana Ingram seeking to overturn their conviction for cheating on quiz show “Who Wants To Be a Millionaire”. Link
In 2020 Rhona’s client Robert Firkins had his conviction for double murder referred by the Criminal Case Review Commission following submissions co-authored by Rhona and Jane Hickman of Hickman and Rose Solicitors acting on behalf of Robert’s brother Lee Firkins.
Also, in 2020 the Commission referred the historic convictions of striking union members the Shrewsbury Pickets. Link Rhona drafted the successful submissions for the Shrewsbury Pickets case when at her previous firm Bindmans LLP.
Here’s what people say:
“She has an encyclopaedic knowledge of criminal law and a real passion for justice.” Chambers UK 2020
“absolutely fantastic and incredibly committed.” Chambers UK 2017
“obviously brilliant” receives praise for her legal aid work and experience in appellate proceedings.
Sources report: “She is a bright and innovative solicitor who is very good on psychiatric and psychological issues. She is very good on the analysis of cases, finding things that other people would not.” Chambers UK 2016
“exceptionally bright and very charismatic“. Chambers UK 2015
Sources describe Rhona Friedman as “absolutely fantastic,” “her understanding of not just criminal law but of the context – the way police work, the way in which organised crime works – is just phenomenal.” Chambers UK 2014
R v M – successful defence of a man extradited to the UK alleged to be the head of a multi- million pound Class A drug supply gang. Rhona identified multiple failures of prosecution disclosure which caused the case to be halted during a retrial
R v S – successfully defended young man accused of a gun killing of a teenager in Camden
R v M – client acquitted of gang related gun murder in Tottenham High Road
R v P – historic family allegation brought to a halt during trial after expert evidence of a false confession
R v M – successful defence of community activist and rights campaigner accused of fraud
R v McKnight – successful defence of businessman accused of attempted murder
R v Hamza – successful defence of well-known engineer and social reformer accused of plotting to kill high ranking Egyptian political figures
R v A – attempted murder acquittal of teenager accused of knife revenge attack in Essex
R v E – a successful psychiatric defence of a woman accused of attempted murder of her adopted child
Rhona was on the advisory panel for the Equality and Human Rights Commission statutory inquiry into the treatment of disabled people in the criminal justice system in 2019
Rhona was named Times Lawyer of the Week for representing Samantha Orobator whose release from death row in Laos was secured by the legal charity Reprieve
Rhona is a committee member of the London Criminal Courts’ Solicitors Association and is a co-founder of the campaigning organisation Justice Alliance