Tim Otty QC is widely recognized as a leading practitioner in public international law, constitutional law, and human rights law and has recently been appointed as the United Kingdom’s Representative on the European Commission for Democracy through Law, (the “Venice Commission”). He was appointed Queens Counsel in 2006 and has wide experience as Leading Counsel at all levels of United Kingdom courts, other Commonwealth domestic courts, and a range of international courts and tribunals. He has appeared in more than 40 cases at the European Court of Human Rights and has also acted in an advisory capacity to United Nations office holders. Among his most significant cases are successful challenges to the death penalty in Turkey leading to abolition in that country, to the denial of habeas corpus rights for detainees at Guantanamo Bay, to the restriction of fair trial rights in the War on Terror, and to the criminalization of consensual homosexual conduct in the Commonwealth. He has also appeared in leading cases at the European Court of Human Rights concerned with internal armed conflict in Turkey, Iraq, and Chechnya.
In addition to his work at the Bar he has been a visiting fellow or lecturer at the London School of Economics and Oxford University, and is currently a Visiting Professor at Kings College London. He has carried out judicial and rule of law training in Croatia, the West Bank, Serbia, and Turkey and has acted as an international trial observer in Georgia, Greece, Serbia, and Turkey. He has been called to the Bar of the United Kingdom, the Bar of Belize, the Bar of the British Virgin Islands, the Bar of Gibraltar (ad hoc), and the Bar of Ireland. In 2010 he founded the NGO the Human Dignity Trust to help use the law to defend the human rights of LGBT people around the world.