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Bryan Cave has promoted nine lawyers to the partnership, with litigator Robert Dougans becoming the only London-based lawyer to join the partnership.
Dougans rose to fame in 2009 when he became a poster boy for freedom of speech campaigners. At the time he was instructed to act for science writer Simon Singh in defence of a libel claim brought against him by the British Chiropractic Association (BCA).
Science writer Singh wrote an article in The Guardian’s comment pages in April 2008 criticising the British Chiropractic Association (BCA). The association launched a libel claim against him and, at a subsequent hearing, Mr Justice Eady refused Singh permission to use the fair comment defence. It was on this point that Dougan went to the Court of Appeal and won the case (1 April 2010).
The work earned him the title of The Lawyer Associate of the Year in 2011. At the time he said: “I was a bit different from others who’ve won [the award]. They were all there because they were well-regarded by their firms. I’m not saying I’m a pariah, but I got the feeling that my nomination came from the legal and national press coverage I got for my cases” (27 June 2011).
Dougans’ election is one of nine by Bryan Cave.
A further eight lawyers have been elected to partnership across the firm, including in Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and Washington DC. The firm is now home to 426 partners.