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Raja Rajeswaran Uruthiravinayagan , Duncan Lewis , Public Law Solicitor , City of London

Raja Rajeswaran Uruthiravinayagan


Contact Information

Profile / Experience

Awards and Recommendations for Raja Rajeswaran Uruthiravinayagan
LALYWinner2019.jpg Legal 500

Raja is a Recommended Lawyer in the 2020 edition of The Legal 500.

Legal 500 2020 Edition.
Human Resources: Immigration, human rights, appeals & overstay / London

Winner: Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year - Public Law - Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year (LALY) Awards 2019

LALY Winner 2019 Edition.
Public Law / Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year Awards
I am a Solicitor in the Public Law Department at Duncan Lewis. I have experience not only in public Law matters but also in criminal law, regulatory law and immigration law including asylum and human rights matters.

I have extensive experience in the Administrative Court, Court of Appeal, the Supreme Court and the ECHR, litigating across a broad range of areas and regularly conducting high profile class-action challenges to unlawful policies and practices affecting vulnerable people.

I am committed to improving access to justice and to achieving social justice through the use of law. Many of my clients are extremely vulnerable asylum seekers who are victims of torture, rape and/or trafficking. I fight to protect their right to liberty and to be granted refuge from persecution.

I have Level 2 and Supervisor accreditation under the Law Society's Immigration and Asylum Accreditation Scheme. This means that I have shown that I have a high level of knowledge and experience in the area of Immigration law and permits me to represent both private and publicly (legal aid) funded clients.


  • MSc International Human Rights Law - University of Oxford (2022 - 2024)
  • Master of Laws LLM - London School of Economics
  • Bachelor of Laws LLB - London School of Economics


  • Duncan Lewis Solicitors (2012 - Present)
  • Licensed to Practice in British Indian Overseas Territory (BIOT) (2022)
  • Qualified as a Solicitor (2011)
  • Qualified as a Barrister (2008)


  • I am grateful for the expert legal representation provided by Professor Chandran and Raja Rajeswaran Uruthiravinayagan, and for the significant contribution that they have made to securing another major development in international law, strengthening the protection of human rights for victims and survivors of human trafficking and domestic servitude. - UN Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children

  • He brilliantly, and fearlessly, promotes the rights and interests of irregular immigrants, in the UK’s hostile environment…he epitomises what the rule of law and access to justice means, in real terms, and without which they cannot exist. - King’s Counsel and High Cout Judge

  • His attention to detail and in ensuring no stone is left unturned in pursuing his clients’ best interests is second to none. - Barrister and Deputy Judge of the Upper Tribunal

  • He constantly proved himself tireless in his pursuit of the extra mile that would enable his clients to often enjoy life changing success. He has regularly proved the rock upon which such vulnerable people have sought protection. - Barrister and Judge of the Upper Tribunal

  • He is clear, realistic and shrewd in his contributions. - King’s Counsel

  • He is fearless in the cases that he takes and pursues. - Barrister and Judge of the First-tier Tribunal

  • Raja is an inspiration to lawyers and to his clients. - King’s Counsel

  • The passion he brings to his work comes from a fundamental need to see the flagrant injustices perpetrated against his clients rectified. - Barrister and Judge of the First-tier Tribunal

  • Raja’s strengths have been in coordinating the team in a way that maximized flow, harmony and efficacy under conditions of data overload, time deadlines, capacity issues and evolving requirements….The case was a huge success for [us] in that all of our strategic objectives were met. - NGO Client

  • His personal and professional attributes place him right at the top of his profession. - Barrister and Professor


  • Winner: Public Law Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year - Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year (LALY) Awards 2019.
  • Shortlisted: Civil Lawyer 2019, Asian Legal Awards.
  • Nominated: Civil Lawyer 2022, Asian Legal Awards.
  • Recommended Lawyer in the 2020 edition of Legal 500.
  • The Times (2009, March 6), 'UN must protect civilians in Sri Lanka: Government needs to confront the situation in northern Sri Lanka' (co-signed by Archbishop Desmond Tutu).
  • OHCHR website (2021, October 5), Submissions on behalf of Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children in Basfar (Respondent) v Wong (Appellant) in the Supreme Court (Case ID: 2020/0155).
Media Work:
  • Provided, as part of the legal team, legal opinion on the exploitation of migrant domestic workers in the documentary Silicon Valley's Online Slave Market. Aired on BBC News Arabic and BBC Africa Eye Advisory.
  • Provided legal opinion on the complex issues surrounding Brexit in Brexit: les exilés dans l'impasse, Hikari Films. Aired on Arte TV.
Other Significant Human Rights Work:
  • My team provided casestudies and asssisted with Privacy International's complaint to the UK's data protection authority (ICO), filed in August 2022, against the GPS tagging policy, which alleged widespread and significant breaches of privacy and data protection law. In March 2024, ICO found that the UK Government's GPS tagging of migrants arriving to the UK by small boats and other 'irregular' routes was unlawful.
  • Advising and assisting TAG (‘Together Against Genocide’) in making written representations and providing evidence to the Foreign Affairs Committee in the UK Parliament in its human rights inquiry (2009) as well as the Human Rights Joint Committee in its inquiry (2009) on UK legislation relating to genocide, torture and related offences committed abroad.

Notable Cases

Supreme Court
  • Wong v Basfar [2022] UKSC 20. Represented the Intervener, United National Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children. The Supreme Court held that diplomatic immunity cannot defeat a claim by a victim of modern slavery.

  • R (JS) v SSHD [2010] UKSC 15 (Supreme Court). The decision represents a significant guidance on the issue of exclusion from refugee status under article 1F of the Refugee Convention.

Court of Appeal
  • R v AAD, AAH AND AAI [2022] EWCA Crim 106. Acted for the Intervener, United Nations Special Rapporteur on Trafficking in persons, especially women and children. A Special Court of the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) provided important guidance for those defending victims of trafficking.

  • SK (Sri Lanka) v The Secretary of State for the Home Department [2015] EWCA Civ 302 on appeal from R (on the application of Kandasamy) [2013] EWHC 3108 (Admin). A successful judicial review concerning the proper application of the humanitarian clause (Article 15) of the Dublin II Regulation, the developing the case law of the CJEU and Article 3 (mental health). Settled by consent following a grant of permission to appeal by the Court of Appeal.
  • R (AG) v SSHD [2016] Court of Appeal. A successful judicial review challenge to removal under Dublin II Regulation to France. This was liked to AI (Sudan) and designated as the lead cases on the issue. Claimant had submitted that the SSHD’s certification regime did not oust his rights under the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union.
  • R (FB) and (Medical Justice) v SSHD [2020] EWCA Civ 1338 (Court of Appeal). This was a successful challenge to the legality of the SSHD's removals policy on enforced removals from the UK on the basis that it abrogates access to justice.
  • MV (Sri Lanka) v SSHD [2018] EWCA Civ 2482. The Court was concerned with the extent to which the test for application of Article 3 ECHR should be adjusted in light of the ECtHR’s Grand Chamber judgment in Paposhvili v. Belgium. The Respondent conceded in open court to review policy and guidance to reflect the ECtHR's judgment.
  • R(BG) v SSHD C4/2016/1722. The Court of Appeal was concerned with the question of the role of the Administrative Court in reviewing trafficking decisions by the Competent Authority. Settled by consent.
  • R (Omar & Ors) v SSHD [2019] EWCA Civ 207. This was a challenge to the legality of SI 2017 No. 405.
  • R (Tabrizagh & Ors) v SSHD [2014] EWCA Civ 1398. Designated lead case on the challenge to removal to Italy under the Dublin Regulation because it will expose them to a real risk of breach of Article 3.
  • R (MC and Ors) v SSHD [2013] EWCA Civ 922. This was designated as the test case on Dublin II Returns to Cyprus, but was subsequently settled by the SSHD.
  • R (PK & Ors) v SSHD [2013] EWHC 1064. Represented three out of the six claimants in the SSHD’s appeal from the decision of Wilkie J and Judge Gleeson granting a generic stay of removal to Sri Lanka pending the outcome of the Country Guidance case. The matter was subsequently settled and the appeal withdrawn by the SSHD. Reported by Channel 4 and The Guardian.
  • S v Law Society [2005] EWCA Civ 47, [2005] 1 WLR 2708, [2005] 4 All ER 1105. The Court of Appeal dealt with a challenge to the Law Society’s intervention procedure and its compatibility with the ECHR.
  • R (Anton Judes) v IAT [2001] EWCA Civ 825. The Court of Appeal gave guidance on the correct test to be applied where the Tribunal has made an error as to the credibility of the Appellant.
High Court
  • R (DNS) v SSHD [2021]. This was a challenge to the Home Office's pilot GPS monitoring scheme. This resulted in the Defendant carrying out a second Data Protection Impact Assessment and agreeing to withdraw the curfew condition. The challenge progressed through other means.
  • R (AB) v Willesden Youth Court [2022]. Successfully challenged Court's decision to allow a CPS application to adjourn the trial after failing to warn the correct witness. Matter settled with the CPS offering no evidence in the criminal proceedings, following the grant of interim relief and permission by the Administrative Court.

  • R (MF) v Upper Tribunal (IAC), Lord Chancellor and SSHD [2019]. This was successful judicial review challenge to a decision of the Upper Tribunal (IAC). It included a challenge to the legality of Rules 17A (3) and (5) of the Tribunal Procedure (Upper Tribunal) Rules 2008. Matter settled when subsequently the Upper Tribunal (IAC) accepted the Claimant’s position in MSU [2019] UKUT 412 (IAC).
  • R (Aidoo & Ors) v SSHD [2020]. Successfully represented a cohort of asylum seekers in a proposed judicial review of the Home Office's bail reporting policies during the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020-2021. Extensive pre-action correspondence resulted in a newly published policy suspending reporting requirements for the majority of vulnerable asylum seekers.
  • R (Ismail) v SSHD [2019] EWHC 3192. High Court confirmed that Dublin III Regulation protects asylum seekers from arbitrary detention by the Home Office from the time they first claim asylum in the UK.
  • R (Shafqat) v SSHD (Upper Tribunal IAC). This was a challenge to whether certain provisions of the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2016 are inconsistent with EU law. The Applicant also petitioned the European Parliament [0712/2017], the outcome of which supported his case. Settled by consent.
  • R (Kanges Kunapalan) [2002] (Admin). This resulted in the Secretary of State being ordered to use their best endeavours to have the Claimant in a wrongful removal case returned from Germany to the United Kingdom. Settled by consent.
  • R (on the application of Prabaharen) [2001] EWHC 764 (Admin). The Court criticised the upholding of SSHD’s Certificate in torture cases.

Criminal Court
  • R v A and Ors. Defending a man charged with conspiring with others to receive components for use in terrorism by a foreign terrorist organisation in Operation Osmium. Defendant unanimously acquitted on all counts. Reported by BBC.
  • R v H and Ors. Defending a man charged with conspiring to facilitate the commission of a breach of immigration law and money laundering, and confiscation proceedings under the Criminal Justice Act 1988. The prosecution case amounted to over 10,000 pages. Reported by BBC.
  • R v NR & Ors. Defending a solicitor charged with money laundering offences. Defendant acquitted of all counts at trial.
  • R v S & Ors. Defending two members of the same family in a multi-handed housing benefit fraud carried out over a period of 15 years and involving DSS fraud by 9 members of the same family.

Civil Court
  • R (VT & Ors) v Commissioner of the British Indian Overseas Territories (BIOT/SC/No.1 & 2/2023). Following a grant of permission by the BIOT Supreme Court, the Commissioner agreed to amend the asylum determination procedure in Diego Garcia by providing a ‘minded-to’ process.
  • D.D. v Slovakia [48587/21]. Representing the Applicant in the ECrtHR. The case involves Slovakia's human rights obligations towards victims of trafficking. Currently in the contentious phase, following a positive admissibility decision.
  • T.V. v Spain [22512/21]. Representing the Applicant in the ECrtHR. The case involves Spain's human rights obligations towards victims of trafficking. Currently in the contentious phase, following a positive admissibility decision.

  • R (HG) v First-tier Tribunal (IAC) and SSHD [2023]. A successful judicial review challenge to set-aside a decision of the First-tier Tribunal (IAC), taken many years earlier, under the now unlawful Asylum and Immigration Tribunal (Fast Track Procedure) Rules 2005.
  • R (FE) v SSHD [2022]. A successful judicial review challenge to the legality of several aspects of the Home Office’s fee-waiver policy and guidance. Settled by consent with the Home Office agreeing to review its policy and guidance within 6 months.
  • R (LE) v SSHD [JR/59/2018 unreported]. A successful judicial review challenge to removal to France under Dublin III Regulation on the basis that the removal would breach Article 3 ECHR.
  • HC v Chief Constable for Cheshire Constabulary [2018]. Successful human rights claim for breach of Article 4 obligations towards a victim of trafficking.
  • Shiromini Satkunarajah & Anr v SSHD (Upper Tribunal IAC), 2017. High-profile removal case of an engineering student at Bangor University. Settled by consent. Reported by BBC, The Guardian, The Independent, The Mirror and all major TV news channels.
  • GJ and Ors (post-civil war: returnees) Sri Lanka CG v. Secretary of State for the Home Department, [2013] UKUT 00319 (IAC). Country Guidance case on Sri Lanka on the post-conflict risk to returned Tamils and others. Acted for the Intervenor TAG. Reported by Huffington Post and TAG.

Membership & Accreditations

  • Level 2 Supervisor - Law Society IAAS Accreditation


  • Trekking. I successfully trekked to the Everest Base Camp in aid of Reprieve in 2010. In 2017, I completed Oxfam Trailwalker, 100km in 30 hours, in aid of Gurkha Welfare Trust and Oxfam.
  • Mountaineering.
  • Photography.
  • Travel.


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