The Right Hon. Lord Neuberger of Abbotsbury has joined Prisoners Abroad as a Trustee, bringing his expertise of the criminal justice system and influence in the sector to oversee and govern our work.

Lord Neuberger’s legal career started in 1974. His work in criminal justice and law include his appointment of Lord Justice of Appeal and a member of the Privy Council. Lord Neuberger’s rise to the Court of Appeal and then to the House of Lords was one of the quickest in recent times. Some of his notable achievements include his lead in an investigation for the Bar Council into widening access to the Bar, and serving on the Panel on Fair Access to the Professions. He retired from President of the Supreme Court in the summer of 2017, after a five year service.

Prisoners Abroad is excited to welcome Lord Neuberger to the organisation at this time, when the needs of British people incarcerated overseas is ever-growing; access to basic human rights evermore essential; and the right to a fair justice system crucial.

In light of becoming a trustee, Lord Neuberger said:

“When I first heard about Prisoners Abroad, I realised that it was a charity which looked after a group of people who really needed help and support, and who were not being assisted by the government or any other group. Without the work of the devoted staff of Prisoners Abroad, many British prisoners abroad would be living in serious deprivation, would have no access to life-saving medical treatment, and would have nothing to read. And they would have no contact with their families in this country. If we want to pride ourselves on living in a civilised society, we have to accept that, whether guilty or not, a prisoner is entitled to proper treatment. While I was a judge, I took an interest in, and supported, the work of this very important charity, and now that I have retired I am honoured to have been asked to become a trustee. As a trustee, I hope to be able to contribute towards the vital and demanding work which is carried out by the charity’s devoted and hard-working staff."

Lord Neuberger also spoke about the work of Prisoners Abroad last year:

“Prisoners Abroad is an entity which is the last refuge for citizens who are victims of justice in other countries. In the Supreme Court, we have a fair number of cases concerned with alleged infringement of fundamental or human rights. Many prisoners abroad face profound and sometimes horrifying problems. Severe overcrowding, lack of food and water, no medical care, violence, language barriers, no contact with family, total or virtual isolation – often for many years, and sometimes even worse with no knowledge of when, or even if, it will end.

As a serving judge I feel very strongly about these problems and wholeheartedly support Prisoners Abroad. As someone closely involved in the justice system, I am wholly committed to fair, effective and humane criminal justice, which importantly includes the protection of society and victims of crime. However, in any decent society, fair, effective and human justice includes the proper treatment of convicted criminals, which does not just mean punishment, it means appropriate punishment including subsequent rehabilitation in society, appropriate not just for the prisoner, but for his or her family and for society as a whole.

The work of Prisoners Abroad is therefore vital – and it is vital that it continues to help people survive their sentences, to help prisoners’ families stay together and to enable ex-prisoners to return and to rebuild their lives.”


We are thrilled to welcome Lord Neuberger to Prisoners Abroad’s Trustee Board.