Why is he in the news? Paul Green, a partner at Judge Sykes Frixou, acted for Anastasia Goncharova, the ‘secret daughter’ of billionaire Russian oligarch Kakha Bendukidze, who died in London while on a business trip. Goncharova says she is the dead man’s daughter, but his widow disputes this.
To prove her claim, Goncharova went to the High Court to get access to Bendukidze’s remains, so they can be DNA-tested in her bid to win a share of his estate. The court ruled in her favour and ordered that the samples be sent to Moscow for testing.
Thoughts on the case: ‘It is the first time the High Court has determined whether there is a statute which would enable UK courts to sanction the release of biological samples for use in a foreign proceeding.
‘While these are unique circumstances, the case will be used as a precedent to ensure other cases can go forward with the knowledge that UK judges will be there to assist foreign proceedings.’
Dealing with the media: ‘The media was supportive and my client came across very well.’
Why become a lawyer? ‘My father was a taxi driver and he used to get home at around 3am. He would record LA Law and wake me up when he got back so we could watch it together, which first inspired me.’
Career high: ‘Last year, I was involved in a case where a Premier League football club was almost sued by a former director. We resolved the case without going to litigation and I got the opportunity to understand the inner workings of a top-flight football club, which was fascinating.’
Career low: ‘When I was a trainee solicitor, I took some trial documents home (ready for the start of a hearing) and forgot to take them out of the cab when I went for after-work drinks. I managed to track down the driver the following day, but for 24 hours I thought I wasn’t going to qualify as a solicitor.’