HHJ Jeffrey Pegden QC has practised in crime all his life. He was made silk in 1996 and appointed a Circuit Judge in 2007. He sits permanently at Southwark Crown Court. He has been Joint Course Director at the Judicial College for the criminal continuation seminars since 2010 and this year he was appointed to sit as a Circuit Judge in the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division). He is a Bencher of Inner Temple.
Dame Bobbie read law at King’s College London before being called to the Bar of England and Wales in 1989. She practiced as a barrister at 2 Hare Court, Chambers of Jonathan Laidlaw QC, for 25 years appearing both for the prosecution and the defence in serious criminal cases and public law. From 2006, she was appointed Treasury Counsel based at the Old Bailey and in 2013 became Queen’s Counsel. She prosecuted over 50 murders, many terrorist trials and had a busy practice in the Court of Appeal.
She specialised in cases of complexity or sensitivity including the first man convicted of directing Al Qaeda in the UK, the first group charged with inciting hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation, allegations of torture of Maoist rebels during the Nepal Civil war and trials where national security concerns required private hearings. She also advised the Government in respect of extra-territorial fraud and corruption charges against US & European banks. She chaired an Advocacy Training Council working group which produced an influential report on the treatment of vulnerable witnesses and defendants in courts. This work led to changes in the training of advocates and fresh trial procedures such as ‘ground rules’ hearings.
Since taking up her appointment to the Queen’s Bench Division of the High Court in November 2015 Dame Bobbie has sat regularly in the Court of Appeal Criminal Division, in the Administrative Court on judicial reviews of the actions of public bodies and on serious criminal trials on circuit. In April 2018 she was invited to Beijing to train Supreme Court Justices on the challenges of tackling modern slavery. She is the Judicial College’s Director of Training for Magistrates and from January 2019 will be a Presiding Judge on the South Eastern Circuit.
Her Honour Judge Sapnara was appointed as a Circuit Judge in March 2014. She sits primarily in family cases in the East London Family Court but also in crime in Kingston Crown Court. She was appointed as a Recorder in 2006. She read law at the London School of Economics.
She was recognised as a leading barrister and practised for 24 years in London, specialising in family public law cases. She is an acknowledged expert in forced marriage, “honour” based violence and domestic violence.
She has served on the Family Law Bar Association Committee and also the Equality and Diversity Committee of the Bar Council. She has taught at the Judicial College and currently serves as both Diversity Community Relations Judge and a Judicial Role Model. She was appointed to the Family Justice Council from its inception and has served as a Trustee/ Board Member of a number of charities such as Ashiana (a refuge for victims of forced marriage and domestic violence) and was a Governor of the state comprehensive school she used to attend.
DJ Mason went to Leicester De Montfort University and then onto York College of Law. De Montfort University has offered an Honorary doctorate which will be awarded to her in the summer of 2017. She qualified as a solicitor in 1994 and became a member of the Law Society’s Children Panel in 1998 specialising in acting for children in Public Law cases working in Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire.
In 2005 she was appointed a Deputy District Judge on the North Eastern Circuit and changed jobs in 2007 to become the Legal Director of NYAS (National Youth Advocacy Service) a Children’s Charity that specialise in acting for children in intractable court cases.
DJ Mason was also appointed Chair of the Law Society’s Family Law Committee in 2008 and started doing lots of policy work in this role.
In 2009 DJ Mason made a career change and whilst still sitting as a Deputy District Judge, she was appointed as an Independent Advisor to the Home Secretary for Criminality Information. This entailed advising and writing 5 reports for Government which were published both in England and Wales and Northern Ireland and entailed changes in law under the Protection Freedom Act. She was awarded a CBE for this work in the Queens Birthday Honours list in June 2014.
DJ Mason became a full time District Judge in October 2012, and spent 18 months working in Cambridgeshire before being appointed to the specialist Family Court in London where she is currently.
In December 2015 Judge Mason was seconded by the Child Sex Abuse Inquiry to assist them in their work on the Truth Project which gives all victims and survivors a voice to share their experiences and she is currently working there trying to ensure that everyone, including those of minorities and hard to reach, are given an opportunity to be listened to.
Judge Anuja Dhir QC was appointed to the JAC as a judicial member on 9 June 2018.
Anuja was appointed as a judge at the Old Bailey in 2017, a Circuit Judge in 2012 and a Recorder in 2010. In 2018 Anuja was authorised to sit in the Court of Appeal Criminal Division.
She was called to the Bar in 1989. She practised as a barrister for 23 years, mainly in crime and from 2007 as a special advocate in national security cases.
Anuja was a member of a number of Bar Council committees, including the equality committee, the professional conduct committee and the law reform committee.
Anuja has been involved in advocacy training in the UK and abroad for over 20 years. In 2015 she was appointed as a Tutor Judge for the Judicial College.