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Brian Altman QC Public Inquiries

Public Inquiries and Reviews

In January 2023, Brian was appointed to the team of counsel representing the Secretary of State for Defence and the Ministry of Defence in the Independent Inquiry relating to Afghanistan, established by the Secretary of State in December 2022. The Inquiry has been set up to examine and report on allegations of unlawful killings by British Army personnel in Afghanistan between 2010 and 2013, as well as the adequacy of investigations by the Service Police and alleged cover-up.

In 2023, Brian was instructed on behalf of Boris Johnson, the former Prime Minister, in Module 2 of the Covid Inquiry.

In January 2017, Brian was appointed Lead Counsel to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) (to see The Times report of the appointment click here). Brian provided strategic and legal advice to the Chair and Panel on all aspects of the Inquiry, as well as overseeing the large counsel team. Brian was Lead Counsel in the Inquiry’s high-profile investigations into Cambridge House, Knowl View and Rochdale, Allegations of Child Sexual Abuse linked to Westminster, The Roman Catholic Church, Institutional Responses to Allegations of Child Sexual Abuse involving the late Lord Janner of Braunstone QC and Effective Leadership of Child Protection.

IICSA was set up by the then Home Secretary (the former Prime Minister, Theresa May) in 2015 to investigate institutional responses into allegations of child sexual abuse made against State and non-State institutions in England and Wales. The Inquiry was one of the highest profile and largest statutory inquiries ever to be established by the Government and lasted in excess of seven years.

The Inquiry ended in 2022 when it published its final report on October 2022. The Inquiry has attracted a large amount of domestic and international publicity and continues to do so. See

Brian was featured in The Times on 17 December 2020 as their Lawyer of the Week for his work as Lead Counsel to IICSA.

In the spring of 2021, Brian was appointed as Lead Counsel to the Brook House Inquiry, whose terms of reference are to examine the mistreatment of detained individuals at the Brook House Immigration Removal Centre in Gatwick, then run by G4S, which was exposed in a BBC Panorama programme in September 2017. The Inquiry concluded in September 2023 with the publication of its report. See

The Daily Mail – Child sex abuse inquiry appoints leading barrister Brian Altman QC

BBC News – Brian Altman QC named as child abuse inquiry counsel

The Guardian – Brian Altman QC named lead counsel child sexual abuse inquiry

The Brief – Altman steps into abuse inquiry counsel gap

IICSA – Inquiry announces new lead counsel

BBC News – Rochdale inquiry: MI5 told of Cyril Smith abuse case lie

Sky News – Rochdale council leader says he had no knowledge of abuse claims

Manchester Evening News – Rochdale’s council leader was subjected to an excruciating grilling at the child sexual abuse inquiry

The Guardian – Lord Steel says he believed Cyril Smith child abuse allegations

The Daily Mail – Ex Liberal leader Lord Steel admits he knew Sir Cyril Smith abused children

The Guardian – Ex MI5 chief avoided Peter Morrison funeral after child sexual abuse claims

The Independent – Thatcher protected Tory MP suspected of abusing children, MI5 files reveal

The Guardian – Child sexual abuse inquiry criticises lack of cooperation from Vatican

The Guardian – I failed archbishop agrees he shut out victim hears inquiry

The Telegraph – Priests would rather die than break the Seal of Confession

The Daily Mail – The 118m child sex abuse probe finds no evidence of Westminster paedophile network

The Guardian – Lord Steel quits lib dems after child abuse inquiry report

The Guardian – Police and politicians turned blind eye to Westminster child abuse claims report

The Times – Tom Watsons Westminster sex ring claims dismissed by child abuse inquiry

The Daily Mail – Police probing abuse claims against Lord Janner did not question Alzheimers

The Daily Mail – Lord Janner inqury Police CPS missed three chances trial child sex claims

The Daily Mail – Children in care homes did not immediately report alleged sexual abuse by the late Lord Janner

The Guardian – Culture of deference may have protected Lord Jenner abuse inquiry hears

The Guardian – Child sexual abuse in catholic church swept under the carpet inquiry finds

BBC News – Cardinal Vincent Nichols criticised over leadership

Call Brian Altman KC on 020 7440 8888 or email: [email protected]

Brian Altman KC is a barrister regulated by the Bar Standards Board