Keith Carmichael (founder of REDRESS) and Leah
Levin OBE (trustee)


Following his release in 1984, Keith Carmichael, a torture survivor, consulted those with extensive experience in human rights, law and non-governmental organizations about how to go about seeking reparation for torture. He also met with over 90 other survivors many of whom, like him, wanted to seek redress but did not know how to go about it. While existing NGOs helped survivors in other ways - by campaigning for their release, providing safe havens and medical care - none assisted them to obtain reparation. While the right to reparation existed in law, the practical difficulties in obtaining reparation proved difficult to overcome.

Keith Carmichael developed the concept for REDRESS in consultation with four persons in particular: the late Peter Davies OBE, former Director of Anti-Slavery International, Dame Rosalyn Higgins QC, Leah Levin, former Director of Justice, and Professor David Weissbrodt of the University of Minnesota, who shared the same interest in seeking ways of obtaining reparation for victims of torture. In 1990, a concept paper for a new initiative, REDRESS - a programme to focus on the right of torture survivors to reparation and to assist them to seek a remedy - was circulated.

The idea was discussed further at the IV International Symposium on Torture and the Medical Profession held in October 1991 in Budapest, and again at the Symposium on Human Rights and Development in December 1991 in Manila. Among others, Eric Sottas, Director of OMCT/SOS-Torture, Professor Bent Sorensen, and Dr Inge Gnefke, participated in the discussion. The conclusion was that there was a need for such a specialised organisation and an action programme should be developed. Keith Carmichael established REDRESS which was registered as a charity in the UK in December 1992.



Staff | Trustees | Trustees (USA) | Patrons | Legal Advisory Council | Founder



Nora Bendžiūtė

Fundraising Assistant

Nora joined REDRESS in 2016 as a Fundraising Assistant. She completed her BA in International Relations at the University of Exeter and is studying for her Master's degree in Understanding and Securing Human Rights at the School of Advanced Study (University of London). She has undertaken various internships in the human rights and diplomatic fields, including with Minority Rights Group (MRG) in London, the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies (GFSIS) in Tbilisi, the Lithuanian Embassy in Paris, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania in Vilnius.

 Gaëlle Carayon

Gaëlle Carayon

Post Conflict Policy Advisor

Gaelle graduated from the Institut d'Etudes Politique in Lyon, France and obtained an LLM in International Human Rights Law from the University of Essex in 2006. Prior to joining REDRESS in 2009, she worked with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees in Tanzania as donor reporting officer. She has also undertaken various internships the human rights fields with Amnesty International in Brussels and the World Organisation against Torture (OMCT) in Geneva. 




Carla Ferstman






Carla Ferstman 


Carla Ferstman joined REDRESS in 2001 as its Legal Director and became the Director in 2005. She was called to the Bar in British Columbia, Canada in 1994 and practiced there as a criminal law barrister. Also prior to joining REDRESS, she worked with the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in post-genocide Rwanda, with Amnesty International's International Secretariat as a legal researcher on trials in Central Africa and as Executive Legal Advisor to Bosnia and Herzegovina's Commission for Real Property Claims of Displaced Persons and Refugees (CRPC). In 2012/13 while on sabbatical from REDRESS she was a Jennings Randolph Senior Fellow at the United States Institute of Peace. She has also been a visiting professional with Australian National University in Canberra. She obtained an LL.B. from the University of British Columbia and an LL.M. from New York University and completed her DPhil at the University of Oxford. She has published and is a regular commentator on victims' rights, the International Criminal Court and the prohibition against torture.

Follow Carla on Twitter on @CarlaFerstman




Kyra Hild

International Legal Advisor

Kyra is a scholar of Trinity College Dublin and obtained her undergraduate LL.B. and her research masters (M. Litt) there. Prior to joining REDRESS in 2015 she worked at the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission in Belfast. Previously she worked at the Permanent Mission of Ireland to the United Nations in New York and has also held various short term human rights positions, including as staff attorney at Cardozo Law School’s Human Rights and Genocide Clinic and an internship at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. She was admitted to the New York Bar in 2009 and to the Roll of Solicitors in Ireland in 2015. She practiced in New York in the area of civil rights and employment law.

Follow Kyra on Twitter on @KyraHild




Makuta Kamara

Finance Assistant

Makuta Upendo Kamara is originally from Sinkunia, in the north of Sierra Leone. From 1996 - 2000, she was an accountant at the Sierra Leoneon military headquarters in Freetown, where she stayed throughout the military conflict in the country.  She moved to the UK in 2000. She holds a BSc (Hons) in Economics, Major in Accounting from the Fourah Bay College, University of Sierra Leone. She is a Part Qualified ACCA and in 2009 obtained an MSc in Charity Accounting and Finance from the London South Bank University. 


Kevin Laue


Kevin Laue

Legal Advisor

Kevin Laue is a Zimbabwean human rights lawyer who was in private practice in that country from 1984 to 2002. In 1996 he was a founder of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, which organization he chaired for the next five years. Originally from South Africa he attended Natal University where he graduated BA (Hons) LLB (cum laude). From 1976 to 1982 he worked for the International Defence and Aid Fund for Southern Africa (IDAF) in London, and was an active member of the Anti-Apartheid Movement. Kevin joined REDRESS in December 2002. 


Charlie Loudon 


Charlie is a practising solicitor, specialising in international law. His work at REDRESS focuses on international human rights litigation, in particular before the African regional human rights bodies. Charlie studied Law at Oxford (BA) and International Law and African Politics at the London School of Oriental and African Studies (MA). He has spent time at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, the Legal Counsel to the World Health Organization and the Ghana Center for Democratic Development. He is currently a Steering Committee member of Oxfam Lawyers Against Poverty. Charlie is UK-qualified and a Higher Courts solicitor advocate. He works at Redress alongside practising at a commercial firm, where he has worked since 2011 and specialises in international arbitration and public international law.



Judy Oder

Legal Advisor

Judy joined REDRESS as Legal Advisor in 2016. Prior to that, she was a Legal Adviser with the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in South Sudan.  Previously, Judy worked at INTERIGHTS and the Institute for Human Rights and Development in Africa where she used strategic litigation, capacity building, institution strengthening and standard setting to implement human rights programmes. Judy read law at Makerere University Kampala and Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, University of Lund. She is admitted to the Ugandan bar. 





Letizia Paoloni


Letizia is a PhD candidate in Political Science at the CUNY Graduate School in New York, where she obtained her Masters degree in Political Science. Prior to joining REDRESS, Letizia was a research associate at the Ralph Bunche Institute for International Studies in New York, where she organised and coordinated the RBI UN Seminar Series, and conducted research on UN operations, human rights, globalisation and development. As project manager of the Ralph Bunche Centenary Celebration Secretariat, she worked closely with over ninety worldwide participating organisations to organise and coordinate the Centenary’s events such as conferences, lectures, exhibits, event openings, educational outreach programmes and TV shows.





Gaia Pergolo

Legal Officer

Gaia holds a law degree from the University of Pavia, Italy and a Masters degree in Human Rights from the London School of Economics in London. She qualified as a lawyer in Italy, where she practised as a criminal defence lawyer.Prior to becoming a Legal Officer with REDRESS in August 2014, she was the ICC Outreach and Advocacy Officer (Maternity Cover) with REDRESS. She also previously worked as an Associate Legal Officer for the Appeals Chamber of the Special Court for Sierra Leone in The Hague. She also worked as a Legal Consultant and pro bono for a number of other human rights organizations, including the International Criminal Court, Human Rights Watch and the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia.


Eva Sanchis



Eva Sanchis

Communications Officer

Eva joined REDRESS in 2011. Prior to joining REDRESS, she was the home affairs editor for El Diario-La Prensa, New York’s largest Spanish-language newspaper. She previously worked as its senior political and investigative reporter, and worked on several award-winning projects, including one that prompted a change in federal detention standards. She has also reported from Spain and the UK, and covered Latin America as an International Reporting Project fellow in Washington, DC. She has a M.A. in Journalism and Latin American studies from New York University, where she was an adjunct professor. Eva is originally from Spain. 


Jürgen Schurr

Head of Law and Policy, Head of REDRESS Nederland

Jürgen joined REDRESS in 2006 as Project Coordinator on Universal Jurisdiction, having previously worked for various human rights organisations. In 2009 he took a position as Associate Legal Officer at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. He returned to REDRESS as Legal Advisor in 2010, with a focus on universal jurisdiction, and litigation & advocacy before the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights. In November 2015, he took up his position as Head of Law and Policy. Jürgen obtained his law degree from the University of East Anglia, UK, and a LLM from the University of Trier, Germany.

Follow Jürgen Schurr on Twitter on @juergenschurr


Michelle Willis


Michelle Willis


Michelle Willis is originally from Marondera, Zimbabwe. She relocated to the UK in 1998 and graduated with a BA in Business Accounting from Wales University. She joined REDRESS in September 2003. Previously, she  worked in the accounting department of the distribution company for Polo / Ralph Lauren. In her spare time she volunteers with 'The Youth Group', an association that provides sporting opportunities for teenagers in Hertfordshire.




Beini Ye

Post-Conflict Legal Advisor

Beini joined REDRESS in 2014 as Post-Conflict Legal Advisor. She completed her law degree at Münster University in Germany followed by a legal apprenticeship in Berlin. Previously, she worked as GIZ Civil Peace Service Advisor with Cambodian Defenders Project to support survivors of the Khmer Rouge regime. Since 2012, Beini is representing victims at the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia as international Civil Party Lawyer.



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Paul Lomas - Chair

Partner at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer

Michael Birnbaum QC

Barrister at 9-12 Bell Yard Chambers.

Professor Bill Bowring

Professor in the School of Law, Birkbeck, University of London. He is a practising barrister at Field Court Chambers, Gray's Inn.

Sherman Carroll PhD, MBE (Hon.)

Head of Amnesty International's campaigns, including the abolition of torture (1974-1983) and co-founder of its medical programme; director of policy at the Medical Foundation for the Care of Victims of Torture (retired 2006); and founding editor of human rights publisher Readers International, London and USA.

Willa Maria Geertsema (Honorary Treasurer)

Director of Finance and Administration at United World Colleges (UWC)

Frances Mary Guy

Head of Middle East at Christian Aid - UK,  Former Representative of UNWomen in Iraq and former British Ambassador to Yemen and Lebanon. 

Leah Levin, OBE

Founder member of REDRESS' Board of Trustees, a Trustee of International Alert, and a former Director of Justice (the British Section of the International Commission of Jurists).

Reverend Nicholas Mercer

Former Lieutenant Colonel with the British army, and teacher at the International Institute of Humanitarian Law, San Remo. Nicholas was named Liberty Human Rights Lawyer of the Year 2011-2012 for his work for prisoners of war in Iraq in 2003.

Baroness Vivien Stern

Crossbench member of the House of Lords. Former Secretary General of Penal Reform International.

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Trustees (USA)

Professor Michael Bazyler, Chair

Stephanie Deckrosh

Professor Naomi Roht-Arriaza

Professor Dinah Shelton

Professor David Weissbrodt

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The Honourable Louise Arbour CC, GOQ

Professor Michael Bazyler

The Rt Hon Lord Crickhowell

Dato’ Param Cumaraswamy

Edward Datnow FRCS

Anthony Foulger

Dr Inge Genefke MD, D.M.Sc.h.c.

Dame Rosalyn Higgins DBE QC

The Rt Hon the Lord Judd

The Lord Lester of Herne Hill QC

Caroline Moorehead OBE, FRSL 

Professor Manfred Nowak

The Rt Rev Lord Harries of Pentregarth

John Simpson CBE

Professor Theo van Boven

Professor David Weissbrodt

Dame Vivienne Westwood DBE, RDI

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Legal Advisory Council

Professor Michael Bazyler

Professor of Law, Chapman University School of Law, California.

Sir Geoffrey Bindman QC (Hon)

Solicitor specialising in human rights and founder and senior consultant at Bindmans LLP.

Joanna Glynn QC

Barrister at One Crown Office Row, Temple.

Professor David Harris CMG

Professor of Law, Nottingham University.

Professor Lorna McGregor

Professor at the University of Essex.

Professor Geraldine Van Bueren

Professor of Law, Queen Mary, University of London.

Professor David Weissbrodt

Professor of Law at the University of Minnesota Law School and Chairperson of the United Nations Sub-Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights.


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Thank you for your continued support!

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Where We Work


Victims Rights Working Groups

Criminal Law Reform in Sudan

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