Nicola has extensive experience as a High Court Advocate and also appears regularly in the Magistrates’ and Crown Court. She first joined Robert Lizar Solicitors in 1990 and was a Partner until 2007. In 2018, she rejoined the firm to work on specialist cases involving civil liberties, appeals and international cases.
She has a wealth of experience in criminal law having successfully defended at all levels in areas including complex crime, extradition, major police investigation, serious crime and murder. She is known for her thorough investigation and innovative thinking and has been cited for remarkable client care. Nicola has notable experience of working with clients who have special needs or disabilities working in tandem with mental health services where appropriate to ensure that those who are potentially vulnerable receive effective representation within the Criminal Justice System. Similarly, she has extensive experience in the defence of those arrested in the course of protest and has successful pursued matters in the European Court to ensure compensation for those discriminated against by a prosecution. Accordingly, she is familiar with the use of Public Law procedures to challenge inappropriate strategies for prosecution. Details of Nicola's notable cases can be found below.
Nicola represented multiple defendants in a large-scale drug conspiracy.
R v D I
Acting as a Higher Rights Advocate, Nicola represented the defendant in a complex case of child neglect.
R v R L
In a case of significant public importance, Nicola represented multiple defendants in a prosecution for public nuisance following a protest. The sentences of the defendants were overturned on appeal and replaced with a conditional discharge.
R v L D
Nicola successfully obtained an acquittal for her client who was charged with offences of causing danger to road users during protest.
R v S, M EH
Nicola successfully argued autre fois convict in relation to charges brough against fracking protesters which resulted in a subsequent acquittal for the same defendants on more serious matters.
R v DJ
Nicola successfully argued that internet commentary on the Conservative Party Conference was not malicious communication.
R v L G
In an appeal against conviction for murder, Nicola successfully argued in the Court of Appeal that the lower court had not taken proper account of the disability of the 15-year-old defendant.
R v EL
Nicola successfully defended protesters who were supporting striking workers opposing a highway boundary.
R v E N
In the case of a 10-year battle to prevent extradition to a third country for prosecution on charges of genocide, Nicola achieved a favourable outcome for her client. The case was heard before both the High Court and the Supreme Court and required extensive investigation and execution of practice and procedures at an international level.
R v MNA
Nicola brought an appeal against conviction for attempted murder on the basis of material non-disclosure.
R v NA
In a case of large-scale drugs importation, a non-custodial sentence was secured for Nicola's client following consideration of his mental health requirements.
Nicola successfully obtained compensation from the UK government for a group of gay men following an application to the European Court based on a discriminatory prosecution for indecency.
Nicola gave legal assistance to the family of a man wrongfully detained at Guantanamo Bay.