Youth Crime2024-01-24T15:46:53+00:00

Youth Crime

We are experts in representing young people that face criminal charges

We are specialists at representing young people at the police station, Youth Court and Crown Court

At GT Stewart, we believe that representing children and young people caught up in the criminal justice system is one of the most important things we do. We understand that it requires particular knowledge and expertise. We have a dedicated team of youth lawyers who have specialised in this area and who are committed to getting the best possible result for their young clients wherever they are representing them.  We want to ensure that any mistakes made when they are young do not affect them adversely later in life.

Greg Stewart, is a recognised expert in representing young people and is a former member of the Law Society Criminal Law Committee, with specific responsibility for Youth Justice. As a consequence of his knowledge and experience in this area, Greg was asked to give oral evidence to both the Carlile inquiry into youth justice and the Lord Taylor review of youth justice. He is also an advisory board member at the Youth Justice and Legal Centre.

Claire Dissington specialises in defending young people at the police station and court. Together with Mel Stooks she is a founder member of the Youth Practitioner’s Association (YPA) and was part of the advisory board which was convened by the Howard League to work on the publication: “Sentencing Young Adults: Making the case for sentencing principles for young adults. She often speaks on Young People and the Criminal Justice System to various organisations including Winchester University Criminology Students, delegates at the Rebel Law conference and lecturers at the BPP.

Mel Stooks has been recognised for many years as a leading specialist in dealing with children and young defendants. Like Greg Stewart, she regularly provides training to other members of the profession including judges. Mel was consulted on the creation of a training scheme for dealing with vulnerable witnesses. Both Mel and Greg were jointly awarded the YJLC Outstanding Achievement Award in 20919 for their contribution to Youth Justice. They both sit on current Ministry of Justice Working Groups on assisting vulnerable witnesses and improving Youth Advocacy. They were both consulted by the SRA for input into the recent SRA guidance on best practice in representing children and young people in the criminal justice system.

There is a highly experienced youth lawyer in each of our offices who deals with a wide range of offences from criminal damage to murder. At every stage, we try to ensure that the young client understands what is happening and is able to fully participate in their defence. In addition to advocacy in criminal proceedings, we have successfully challenged decisions to prosecute and decisions to disclose information on an enhanced DBS certificate. We oppose applications to impose Criminal Behaviour Orders and applications for Gang Injunctions.

We run workshops and surgeries at Youth Clubs educating young people about their rights. We also provide training for appropriate adults so that they are empowered to actively assist their young person at the police station and during the court process.

We have links with Just for Kids Law, London Youth and Young Futures charities.

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GT Stewart has established itself as a leading firm in the UK for criminal law, family & childcare, housing, mental health law, specialising in both private cases and also Legal Aid work.

We pride ourselves on regular referrals from other firms and agencies

We are known for our tenacity when representing those engaged in challenging the State or defending themselves against a prosecution.