Who? Nasir Hafezi, solicitor at Stephen Lickrish & Associates, Manchester.
Why is he in the news? Represented social worker Amy Partington, who was found not guilty of seven counts of indecent assault by a Crown court jury last week. Partington was accused of molesting a child around 15 years ago. She denied wrongdoing.
Thoughts on the case: ‘What made this a unique case was the fact that a social worker was charged with historic sex abuse offences. Unusually, the list of charges dated back over 15 years to a period when my client was a young teenager and the complainant was a child herself.
‘Solicitors are like investigating police officers, especially when trying to discover what did and did not take place over a decade ago. I often use the ABC approach to understanding the strengths and weaknesses of a prosecution case. Assume nothing. Believe nothing. Confirm everything.’
Dealing with the media: ‘The portrayal of my client’s defence and positive good character was a pleasant surprise. What makes the difference in reports, besides the not guilty verdicts, is when reporters sit through the trial and hear the case from start to finish.’
Why become a lawyer? ‘I was inspired by a solicitor relative and pushed by my parents into the same profession. And when I was a lecturer in law, I wanted to practise what I was teaching.’
Career high: ‘Representing the youngest female who had pleaded guilty to terrorism charges in the first Youth Court case. I articulated why this person had come before the court and how she should be sentenced and safeguarded.’
Career low: ‘After I drank water from the bottle in court, a judge chided: “Mr Hafezi, we are not in the jungle now!” or words to that effect. A little shocked, I replied: “We may be able to take a lawyer out of a jungle but sir, you will never be able to take the jungle out of the lawyer’’. I then stormed out of the courtroom looking for Jane.’