Alex has extensive knowledge and intricate understanding of the institutional law of international organisations. He has sound judgement and his down to earth approach was invaluable in my case; he has a sharp mind and I rate him extremely highlyFormer Principal Manager, Risk Management, EBRD
Alex Haines has in-depth knowledge of international administrative law, and has a deft and astute mind, which allowed him to accurately and effectively grasp the problems facing the Staff Association and its members. I particularly appreciate his no-nonsense approach to issues, and the patience and clarity with which he can explain even the most arcane of subjects. His support during my tenure was invaluable; I highly recommend him.Guillermo Almada, Chair, World Bank Group Staff Association 2013-15
I am extremely grateful for Alex's expertise in World Bank internal law, and his support and patience during lengthy proceedings concerning allegations of sanctionable practices. After a three-year investigation by INT, I came out of it totally exonerated.Senior Education Specialist, World Bank Group, 2017
Alex P Haines (email@example.com)
Barrister (called in 2007)
- Member of Bar Council International Committee since 2015
- Rapporteur for Oxford International Organisations (OXIO) since 2016
- Transparency International’s Suspension and Debarment Taskforce team member since 2016
- Direct Access Accredited (2012) including top-up course and authorised to conduct litigation (2015)
- Bar Council, ADRC (Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee) Mediation Advocacy (2013)
- Rule of Law, International Humanitarian Law and International Human Rights Law
- Multilateral Development Bank (MDB/IFI) international corruption investigations
- Multilateral Development Bank (MDB/IFI) negotiations, representation and advocacy before International Sanctions Bodies
- Construct of Integrity Compliance Programmes
- International Organisations Law and International Administrative Law specialist
- Employment Disputes within International Organisations including mediation, representation and advocacy before International Administrative Tribunals
The majority of Alex’s practice involves the complex field of international corruption, bribery and fraud. As a specialist in Multilateral Development Banks and International Financial Institutions (MDBs/IFIs) sanctions cases, Alex regularly represents companies and individuals before the World Bank’s Sanctions Board in Washington DC and the Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) Integrity Oversight Committee (OIC) in Manila. He has a developed understanding and practical perspective of the MDBs’ sanctionable practices (e.g., corrupt or fraudulent) and is familiar, in particular, with the World Bank’s two-tier adjudicative process, consisting of the Bank’s Suspension and Debarment Office (SDO), and its Sanctions Board. Alex is also well versed in the benefits of self-reporting and voluntary disclosure programmes (VDPs). He has assisted a number of British and international companies with redesigning their Integrity Compliance Programmes so that they are consistent with, inter alia, the IFIs’ Principles and Guidelines for Investigations produced in 2006 by the IFIs’ Anti-Corruption Task Force.
Between the end of 2012 and the beginning of 2014, Alex was instructed as part of an independent review team tasked with investigating an international development company based in the UK which was debarred by the World Bank. He has conducted a number of investigations into development projects carried out throughout Africa and South-East Asia, including an investigation on the ground in Vietnam, and has a firm grasp of the very specific and detailed methodology required to conduct effective investigations throughout the entire sanctions proceedings in the context of MDB funded projects. In 2014, Alex was instructed by the Integrity and Anti-Corruption Department (IACD) of the African Development Bank (AfDB) in a complex international corruption case which was jointly investigated by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Alex recently represented two British-based companies before the World Bank Sanctions Board and the ADB’s OIC, and he is conducting a number of investigations on behalf of the AfDB into international corruption alleged to have taken place in a number of central and east African countries.
Alex has written articles on what national jurisdictions like the UK can learn from MDBs/IFIs, which have appeared on the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Anti-corruption website and in Counsel Magazine (April 2015 issue – click here). He has also lectured on the sanctions proceedings of MDBs to the Brazilian Bar Association in Rio de Janeiro (2014), the British Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong (2015), the Korean Bar Association in Seoul (2016), the Shanghai Bar Association in Shanghai (2016) and universities of Paris I (Pantheon-Sorbonne) and Paris II (Pantheon-Assas) (2016). Alex’s work on the sanctions proceedings of MDBs has continued through his efforts with Transparency International’s Suspension and Debarment Taskforce and Oxford International Organisations (OXIO).
Alex regularly represents both international civil servants and international organisations at all levels before the various committees, boards and International Administrative Tribunals (IATs) of inter-governmental organisations. He has experience representing: (i) groups of employees (class actions) of international organisations with collective grievances such as issues regarding their benefits and salaries; (ii) individuals seeking relief from administrative decisions on the basis of discrimination or unfair dismissal; (iii) whistleblowers who have been retaliated against by the organisation for coming forward and shedding light on reprehensible or unethical practices; and (iv) management of international organisations.
Alex’s past and current practice includes cases before the following IATs and bodies:
– World Bank Administrative Tribunal (WBAT)
– United Nations Appeals Tribunal (UNAT)
– European Bank for Reconstruction and Development Administrative Tribunal (EBRDAT)
– Inter-American Development Bank Administrative Tribunal (IADBAT)
– Asian Development Bank Administrative Tribunal (ADBAT)
– International Labour Organisation Administrative Tribunal (ILOAT)
– Commonwealth Secretariat Arbitral Tribunal (CSAT)
– Grievance Committee of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)
– Board of Appeal of the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO)
– Joint Disciplinary Committee of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO)
– Joint Appeals Board of the International Coffee Organisation (ICO)
– Administrative Tribunal of the Bank for International Settlement (ATBIS)
Alex has also represented employees of the International Criminal Court (ICC), the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
In 2014, Alex represented thirteen Latin American Country Offices (including Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Guyana, Colombia, Panama, Paraguay and Uruguay) of a large MDB in a complex class action relating to the right to save. In March 2015, Alex gave a presentation on the Appeals Systems of international organisations at the Council of Europe in Strasbourg for the 50th Anniversary of its Administrative Tribunal (click here). In November 2015, Alex chaired a conference on international administrative law at the British Embassy Residence in Vienna. He has also been accepted as a UN Office of Staff Legal Assistance (OSLA) volunteer lawyer.
Alex faces varying approaches, languages and cultures on a daily basis and has a clear understanding of the internal rules including the Human Rights implications that operate within international organisations. His innate empathy with different nationalities, his cultural sensitivity and his fluency in French and Spanish enable Alex to passionately and effectively defend the clients he represents against large international organisations, wherever in the world they might be. He has a particular interest in women rights, having represented international civil servants who have been victim of sexual harassment, maternity discrimination and retaliation within several international organisations.
Alex’s international practice regularly covers and overlaps with international human rights law and rule of law issues.
Human Rights within international organisations
The majority of Alex’s international administrative law practice (i.e., the employment law of the international civil servant) involves ensuring that the employees of international organisation worldwide are provided with an internal justice system which is compliant with international human rights principles and general principles of international law. If the international organisation in question fails to ensure that its internal justice system stays above the minimum standard, the organisation’s immunities will be at risk. Alex has been instructed in cases at the Administrative Tribunals of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (‘EBRD’) and the Asian Development Bank (‘ADB’) for cases relating to the lawfulness of the organisation’s internal justice system and its consistency with the ECHR and ECtHR caselaw.
In the field of international corruption, Alex represents individuals accused of sanctionable practices such as fraud and collusion, and part of his practice involves ensuring that due process and the rule of law is upheld. Alex has given a number of lectures on the applicability of international human rights law to international organisations and the limit of their immunities, most notably at the international administrative law Centre of Excellence annual conferences in London (2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016), at the Law Faculty of Brasilia University (2014), at the Universities of Exeter, City of London, Hong Kong (2015), and at the Universities of King’s and La Sorbonne (2016). He has also lectured at King’s College London for the 2010 Global Justice Series on International and Human Rights Law (Prosecuting War Crimes at the ICC: Evidence, Witnesses, Disclosure and Politics).
Bar Council and Transparency International work
Alex has been a member of the Bar Council International Committee since February 2015 where he sits on the Latin America and China interest groups, and is also on Transparency International’s Suspension and Debarment Taskforce. The Bar Council International Committee’s mandate includes the support of the rule of law internationally. Through a number of Bar Council missions, including Brazil in 2014, and South Korea and China in 2016, Alex has actively participated in this work. He also has a particular interest in women rights, having represented international civil servants who have been victim of sexual harassment, maternity discrimination and retaliation within several international organisations. Alex has worked with the charities Penal Reform International and Advocates for International Developments specifically on the rights of female abuse victims convicted of violent crime against their abusers.
International trial observation
Before joining BWL, Alex practised for almost five years at the criminal bar, both prosecuting and defending, and the cases he was instructed in included heroin importation, serious violence, child cruelty and human trafficking. Alex has an intricate understanding of what constitutes a fair trial, and in December 2013, he attended in his capacity as an independent international observer, the 7th hearing in Istanbul in the long-running criminal trial of the legal representatives of the leader of the PKK. A delegation of leading European lawyers attended the trial, which is taking place in the largest courthouse in the world. Alex’ mandate as a trial observer was to, inter alia, make the participants aware that they were under scrutiny, and to impartially record his views on the conduct and standard of the trial from a human rights perspective to ensure it complied with rule of law principles.
International humanitarian law
Alex has two diplomas from the International Institute of Humanitarian Law in Sanremo on the Law of Armed Conflict (‘LOAC’, 152nd International Military Course in November 2013, and 34th Advanced Course on IHL in May 2017), which included modules on the applicability of LOAC, methods and means of warfare, internal armed conflict, belligerent occupations, peace support operations and the enforcement of ‘LOAC’.
International Criminal Law
In 2007, Alex was offered an internship in the Prosecution Division of the Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court in The Hague. He worked in both French and English as an evidence reviewer for Prosecution’s disclosure obligations in the second Democratic Republic of the Congo case (i.e, the Katanga case) to come before the court, which involved a massacre in the village of Bogoro, in the northeast of the country, in 2003.
Mediation is a flexible and informal process conducted confidentially in which a neutral person – the Mediator – actively assists the international civil servant and the international organisation for which he or she works (‘the Parties’) in working towards a negotiated agreement of the employment dispute, with the Parties in ultimate control of the decision to settle and the terms of resolution. Alex is experienced in mediations, notably those involving class action brought by Latin American employees of Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs). In September 2013, he represented over 140 employees of a large MDB in a string of mediations in Washington DC. The employees were from ten Regional Offices throughout Central America, South America and the Caribbean, and the mediation sessions were held in Spanish and English. Alex also regularly represents employees in mediation proceedings at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) in London.
Mediation is playing an ever increasing role in the internal justice systems operated by many international organisations, such as the Asian Development Bank (ADB), where it is termed Compulsory Conciliation, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the World Bank Group. A good example of the widening use of mediation can be found at the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) based in Washington DC. On 1st April 2013, the IDB adopted and implemented a new internal justice system (PE-323) that controversially replaced its Conciliation Committee, which was for many years the IDB’s first-tier fact finding body or ‘court-of-first instance,’ with compulsory or Formal Mediation. IDB employees are now compelled by the Bank’s internal law to use mediation to attempt to resolve their employment disputes before they are permitted to have the merits of their respective cases aired before judges of the IDB Administrative Tribunal.
Alex is open to and welcomes instructions as a lawyer representing parties in mediation, in the ADR processes operated by the various international organisations around the world.
Alex is a specialist in international law. He regularly appears and litigates before (i) International Administrative Tribunals (e.g., the United Nations Appeals Tribunal (UNAT), and the Administrative Tribunals of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDBAT) and International Labour Organisation (ILOAT)); and (ii) international sanctions boards (e.g., the World Bank Sanctions Board and the Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) Integrity Oversight Committee (IOC)) in London, Washington DC, New York City, Geneva and Manila. Alex has been a member of the Bar Council International Committee since February 2015 where he sits on the Latin America and China interest groups, and is also on Transparency International’s Suspension and Debarment Taskforce.
Prior to being called to the Bar in 2007, Alex, who is also fluent in Spanish and French, completed a Master’s degree in European and International Law. He subsequently worked for the Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague on the Katanga case before undertaking pupillage in London. Following successful completion of pupillage and after securing tenancy, Alex initially practised as a barrister (both for the defence and prosecution) in London. He has appeared as a junior alone before the High Court in Judicial Review proceedings (reported), the Court of Appeal in a successful appeal against conviction, and as trial counsel in the Central Criminal Court.
Alex has given seminars on the institutional law of international organisations to the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) and the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) regional offices in Brasilia in 2014. Alex has also given presentations on tackling corruption internationally and the role of the sanctions regimes of Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs) in the anti-corruption fight to the Brazilian Bar Association in Rio de Janeiro (2014), the British Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong (2015), the Korean Bar Association in Seoul (2016) and the Shanghai Bar Association in Shanghai (2016).
Alex has lectured at King’s College London (2010) on International and Human Rights Law (Prosecuting War Crimes at the ICC: Evidence, Witnesses, Disclosure and Politics), and the Universities of Brasilia (2014), Exeter (2015), City of London (2015), Hong Kong (2015), King’s (2016) and La Sorbonne (2016) on the immunities of International Organisations. He has also lectured on the Appeals Systems of International Organisations at the Council of Europe in Strasbourg for the 50th anniversary of its Administrative Tribunal (2015) (click here), and he is a rapporteur for Oxford International Organisations (OXIO), a new database collating the law of international organisations.
In December 2013, Alex attended in his capacity as an independent international observer the 7th hearing in Istanbul in the long-running criminal trial of the legal representatives of the leader of the PKK.
Alex has a particular interest in Latin American history and culture, having travelled through Mexico, Cuba, Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, Costa Rica, Colombia, Peru, Bolivia, Chile, Argentina and Brazil on different occasions, and is also a keen enthusiast of Andalusian cities. Alex is an honorary board member of the Exeter Student Law Review (ESLR) and has played rugby union for most of his life and is currently captain of his local rugby club in London.
- LLB (Law and French Law), University of Exeter
- Maîtrise en Droit Européen et International, Université de Rennes
- Bar Vocational Course (BVC), Inns of Court School of Law
- Called to the Bar of England and Wales in 2007 (Lincoln’s Inn)
- Diploma from the International Institute of Humanitarian Law in Sanremo on the Law of Armed Conflict (152nd International Military Course – November 2013)
- Diploma from the International Institute of Humanitarian Law in Sanremo on the Law of Armed Conflict (34th Advanced Course on IHL – May 2017)
- French (native)
- Spanish (fluent)
- Italian (basic)
- Lincoln’s Inn
- Criminal Bar Association (CBA)
- South Eastern Circuit (SEC)
- Human Rights Lawyers Association (HRLA)
- Panel member of Lincoln’s Inn Pro Bono Unit for the representation of students at disciplinary hearings before the Inns’ Conduct Committee of the Council of the Inns of Court (COIC)
- International Administrative Law Centre of Excellence (IAL COE)
- British Spanish Law Association (BSLA)
- London Common Law and Commercial Bar Association (LCLCBA)
- Member of the Bar Council International Committee (since February 2015)
Awards and Scholarships
- Hardwick Scholar (Lincoln’s Inn)
- Scholarship for International Law Placement (Lincoln’s Inn)
- Pupillage Award (Lincoln’s Inn)
- Florida Advocacy Course Scholarship (South Eastern Circuit)
- UKTI grant for Bar Council’s business development mission to Brazil
- International Legal and Professional Development Grant Programme for Bar Council’s business development mission to South Korea and China (CBA)
- Direct Access Accredited (Bar Council, 2012)
- Mediation Advocacy (Bar Council ADRC, 2013)
- Trained in International Humanitarian Law (Law of Armed Conflict, 2013 and 2017)
- Completed Bar Standards Board Litigation Course (Bar Council, 2014)
- Direct Access top-up course (Bar Council 2015)
- Authorised to conduct litigation (2015)
Marler is an established expert in the rule of law and public international law generally. I have seen him at work over the years and he is impressive. A barrister with a quick mind, an eloquent tongue and a talent with a pen, as well as having a keen sense of humour. I selected him to be my General Counsel at EQ-G for a reason.General Sir David Richards GCB CBE DSO (former UK CDS and now Lord Richards of Hertsmonceux)
Lawyers in private practice with talent and expertise in resolving MDB sanctions cases are few and far between, but Lee Marler is one of them. He has proven himself time and again to be knowledgeable and highly effective. He is also a fine advocate and draftsman, and this is why I instruct him – where necessary – to assist IACD in its efforts to curb corruption on AfDB financed projects.Anna Bossman, Director, AfDB’s Integrity and Anticorruption Department (“IACD”)
An unparalleled blend of legal expertise in the area of International Administrative Law and an understanding of the mindset and functioning of legal departments at international institutions.”Zbigniew Kominek, Former Chair, EBRD Staff Council