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David Haigh



Solicitor (Non-Practising)

Detained International was founded by David Haigh in 2016 after he was released from 22 months of wrongful imprisonment in Dubai, which included torture and abuse; he was later acquitted. During those 22 months David saw the desperate need for a Dubai-focused legal advocacy group. He co-founded Detained in Dubai Ltd with Radha Stirling in 2016, and in 2018 decided to focus on the provision of pro bono legal advocacy through Detained International. His core belief that victims of injustice and human violations should be helped irrespective of their ability to pay fees is a core tenet of Detained International’s ethos.

While David was incarcerated, he identified the urgent need for a Dubai focused legal advocacy to help innocent victims of the draconian justice system in operation.  David co-founded Detained in Dubai Ltd with Radha Stirling in 2016, and then in 2018 decided to focus on the provision of pro-bono legal advocacy through Detained International.  His ethos: All victims of injustice and Human Rights abuses should have access to professional assistance, irrespective of ability to pay.

David Haigh is a leading Human Rights lawyer, international crisis manager, media commentator, writer, entrepreneur and philanthropist. As a high-profile defenderof Human Rights within the UAE; David speaks at the United Nations onHuman Rights within the UAE and is regularly called as an expert witness in cases pertaining to Human Rights abuse in the UAE, Interpol abuse and UAE extradition requests. His experience means he regularly appears on radio and television across the globe, offering context, when human rights abuse in the Middle East arises. In 2017 his Human Rights work became so high profile that the respected BBC programme ‘Hardtalk’ dedicated an entire episode to his personal fight for justice and that of others who trust him with their fight for freedom.