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13 Apr 18 Back to Listing

Peter Laverack in landmark case decriminalising homosexuality in Trinidad and Tobago

5 Essex Court third-six pupil Peter Laverack has achieved significant success in the landmark case of Jones v Attorney General of Trinidad and Tobago, which has decriminalised homosexuality in that Caribbean nation.

Two laws that prohibited same-sex sexual intimacy, which carried a maximum sentence of 25 years' imprisonment, were held to be unconstitutional.  The High Court in Port-of-Spain declared that the rights to privacy and family life, equality before the law and freedom of expression were violated. Peter was Mr Jones's international law advisor, supporting counsels-of-record Richard Drabble QC and Rishi Dass of the English and Trinidadian bar, respectively.

Peter's client Mr Jones has written an article about the case which has been widely published in the media - see article in The Guardian

Mr Jones stated: "It was only the support of my legal team that kept me going – Rishi Dass and Antonio Emmanuel in Trinidad, and Peter Laverack in London, who in particular has been my rock, and was the architect of the legal arguments that won the day."

Before being called to the Bar, Peter practised as a solicitor and in the NGO sector, where he worked on similar cases in other Commonwealth countries. Peter is now working with Jeremy Johnson QC on a number of other Commonwealth human rights cases.