David Gottlieb

Called:1988 Inner Temple

Specialisms:Crime, Financial & Regulatory Crime, Public & Human Rights



David Gottlieb is a trial lawyer with an extensive practice arguing the hardest cases at the highest level. He is noted for defending in high profile terrorism and fraud cases. He also continues, where possible, to represent anyone who believes they have been treated unjustly.





His cases, many of which have been reported, have involved Terrorism, Freedom of Speech, Murder, Firearms, Drugs, Money Laundering, Fraud, Extradition, Control Orders, Special Immigration and Appeals Commission, Human Rights, Civil Liberties and Public Law. He has a long-standing interest in cases concerning the treatment of people with mental health issues.


As a young barrister, David Gottlieb built up a Freedom of Speech practice defending Poll Tax and Fathers4Justice protesters. He successfully defended in the ‘Buckingham Palace’ trial and the ‘handcuffing of Rt. Hon. Margaret Hodge MP’ trial. These were cases which were described at the time as ‘hopeless’ but where the defendants were not willing to plead guilty.


Recent notable cases at first instance include:


  • Successful defence of Salma Kabal before a jury at Woolwich (failing to disclose her husband was a terrorist). David Gottlieb was described by Ms. Kabal in the press as ‘inspirational’ (2013).


  • Successful defence of H.E. before a jury at the Old Bailey (downloading bomb-making instructions from the internet) (2012).


  • Successful defence of singer and songwriter P.J. Proby, before a jury (benefit fraud). Case dismissed after cross-examination. P.J. Proby later wrote and recorded a song about his barrister, called “David and Goliath” (2012).


  • Successful defence of NJ, a young mother, before a jury (making up a false allegation of rape in order to stay in the U.K) (2011).


He is currently working on representing Y1 (a British citizens stripped of his citizenship). He has been retained to lead for the defence on a charge of misconduct in public office.


David Gottlieb also advises on civil and commercial matters. He has expertise in cases on cross-examination, trial strategy and the best way to settle arbitrations/litigation. In May 2013 he successfully represented a woman with cerebral palsy in a civil case. As a result, her story is due to be televised on BBC 1 in Autumn 2013.





R v Waseem Malik (1999) EWCA 1718 (22nd April, 1999) A police-officer may be cross-examined on his disciplinary record. In his judgment the Lord Chief Justice, Lord Bingham, said that ‘[Mr Gottlieb] made his submissions in an attractive and persuasive manner’.


R v Watters [2000] EWCA Crim 89 (19th October 2000) Successful Appeal against conviction. The trial judge wrongly directed the jury on the significance of unsupported DNA evidence.


Dales & Others (on the application of) v Wolverhampton Crown Court & Another [2003] EWHC 1307Successful appeal leading to release on bail for large drugs conspiracy on Custody Time Limits.


Malik v Central Criminal Court & another [2006] EWHC 1539 (Admin) [2006] 4 All ER 1141, [2007] 1 WLR 2455. First successful Judicial Review leading to the release on bail of a person accused of an offence under 2000 Terrorism Act.


R v M [2007] EWCA Crim 298, [2008] Crim LR 71. Interlocutory appeal successfully dismissing an offence under section 57 Terrorism Act 2000 (later overturned).

R v M (2) [2007] EWCA Crim 970; [2007] 3 All ER 53, [2007]; [2008] 2 Cr App R 8, [2008] 2 Cr App Rep 8, [2008] 2 WLR 1013, [2008] 4 All ER 46, [2008] EWCA Crim 184, [2008] QB 810 First attempt to challenge the overturning of M1, leading Faisal Saifee.

AD (Control Order) [2007] The Times May 18 2007: First prosecution of a control order to reach the Court of Appeal (defendant absconded before trial; prosecution stayed).

Zafar & Ors v R [2008] EWCA Crim 184; [2008] 2 Cr App R 8; [2008] 2 Cr App Rep 8; [2008] 2 WLR 1013; [2008] 4 All ER 46; [2008] QB 810. Successful appeal against section 57 Terrorism Act which distinguished M(2). In his judgment, the Lord Chief Justice Lord Phillips said: ‘Early in the trial Mr Gottlieb, on behalf of Malik, asked the judge to rule on the meaning and scope of section 57. His concise written submissions in support of the application argued that the phrase ‘a purpose connected with’ required the connection to be direct, not merely remote, and that the purpose had to be connected with the immediate commission, preparation or instigation of terrorist acts, at least in the sense of something that was to happen within a relatively short time’.


R v K [2008] EWCA Crim 1900; [2009] 1 All ER 510; [2009] 1 Cr App R 9; [2009] 1 Cr App Rep 9; [2009] 1 WLR 694; [2009] PNLR 6, [2009] WLR 694. Successful interlocutory appeal for non-practising barrister accused of practising without a certificate.


R v Abbas [2009] EWCA Crim 1386; [2010] Cr.App. R (S) 47; [2010] 1 Cr.App. Rep (S) 47. Successfully reduced sentence for an unprovoked assault.


R v Shah Jala Hussain [2009] EWCA Crim 920 leading Freya Rowe. Successfully reduced sentence for fundraising contrary to s.15(1) Terrorism Act 2000.


Arshad v Southwark Crown Court [2011] EWCA 2728 108(20); L.S.G. 2110 (£10 million fraud). Successfully released on bail due to failure to comply with Custody Time Limits.

Saunders v R [2012] EWCA Crim 1380; [2012] EWCA Crim 1380 (inferences from silence).


M (A Parliamentary candidate name redacted) [2012] Conviction for possession of child pornography quashed and retrial ordered; to be reported.





Criminal Bar Association