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30 September 2021
Leonardo Royal Hotel Tower BridgeUK

Maya Lester QC
Barrister at Brick Court Chambers


Maya Lester has a wide ranging practice in public law, European law, competition law, public international law, and human rights & civil liberties.  She regularly appears in leading cases in the Courts of England, Luxembourg and Strasbourg, and in the Competition Appeal Tribunal.  She is highly recommended and ranked in all 5 areas by the legal directories and is regularly nominated for legal awards. Maya Lester is a member of the Attorney General’s A panel and Public International Law A Panel of Treasury Counsel.

Maya Lester has a particular expertise in the law relating to economic sanctions.  She co-writes a blog on European sanctions law (, spent 2011-12 in New York at Columbia Law School lecturing and writing on sanctions, and is a Bingham Centre Fellow researching sanctions and the rule of law.  She represents and advises hundreds of companies and individuals before the European and English courts and has acted in most of the leading cases, including Kadi, Tay Za, Central Bank of Iran, NITC and IRISL.

Her most significant cases include R (Bancoult) v Secretary of State (the Chagos Islands litigation in the UK and ECHR), Enron v EWS (the first follow-on competition damages trial in the UK, and several subsequent follow-on actions), R v Goldshield (prosecuting cartels as conspiracy to defraud), the Shambo judicial review (on bovine TB).  Maya appears regularly in judicial reviews of regulatory decisions (Cityhook, UniChem) and competition appeals (including on LIBOR, Pay TV, horseracing, dairy, and construction recruitment forum) and damages actions (including Enron and National Grid).

Maya was a founder of the Human Rights Lawyers Association and undertakes regular pro bono work.   There is a strong US and international angle to her practice; she studied at Yale and Columbia Law Schools, is a member of the American Society for International Law Program Committee, and a regular speaker at Chatham House, the ABA Antitrust Spring Meeting, BIICL, and the International Bar Association and Bar European Group conferences.

Agenda Sessions

  • Practical Challenges of Dealing with Corruption & Human Rights Sanctions Regimes