Who? Amjad Salfiti, 42-year-old sole practitioner of north London firm Salfiti & Co.

He specialises in human rights.

Why is he in the news? Represents Dr Said Al-Zu'air, a Saudi dissident who was released last week after eight years' imprisonment without trial.

An Islamist reformer, he was arrested in 1995 after highlighting corruption in the country and calling for democratic reforms.

Earlier this month, Mr Salfiti had lodged an official request with the Attorney-General in London to bring international criminal proceedings against a Saudi minister, the first request of its kind.

Background: LLB at University of Central Lancashire 1983-86 followed by Law Society finals at the College of Law at Lancaster Gate 1991.

He qualified with (now dissolved) north London firm Lizzimore Braithwaite in 1994, where he stayed until setting up his own firm in 1996.

Route to the case: 'I was contacted by Dr Al-Zu'air's family and friends to help organise an international legal campaign for his release.'

Thoughts on the case: 'It was a big step for the Saudi government to release my client, as he is a critic of the ruling government and now he is released he will mobilise support against them.

This is very significant because it shows that legal steps can be taken to stop governments falsely imprisoning and torturing their citizens.

The reason I lodged the appeal with the Attorney-General was because the Saudi government is very publicity sensitive, and I am sure that Dr Al-Zu'air was released because of the government's fear of bad publicity.

Despite his release, legal action has not stopped and we will be seeking compensation.'

Dealing with the media: 'I have dealt with a number of high-profile cases, such as the bombing of the Israeli embassy in 1994 and the hi-jacking of a Sudanese aeroplane in 1998.

I've also represented a number of politicians from the Middle East who have applied for asylum in the UK, and so I feel relatively experienced and confident in my dealings with the press.'

Victoria MacCallum