Catha MacPartholán

Year of Call: 2021 (Mature)

Mr MacPartholán is a criminal defence practitioner with a direct and dynamic approach to cases. He currently accepts instructions nationally, with a practice based in the City of London.

Before practising in criminal defence, Mr MacPartholán was a professional academic and Law Lecturer. He was a Lecturer in Criminal Law and Evidence (for Undergraduate LLB students), and Lecturer in International Criminal Law and Legal Research Methods (for Postgraduate LLM students), at Bangor University.

In addition to his busy practice, Mr MacPartholán remains a prominently publishing legal academic in Criminal Law, Evidence, and International Criminal Law.


Mr MacPartholán accepts instructions across the spectrum of criminal defence practice, including serious offences against stalking and harassments, offensive weapons, driving offences, person, fraud, burglary, robbery, and theft, sexual offences, and police conduct.

He covers a range of hearings, from trials to sentences, PTPHs, bail applications, abuse of process applications, and a range of other matters.

Appointments & Memberships:

After joining Middle Temple in 2017, he was Called to the Bar in 2021. He is a member of The Honourable Society of Middle Temple, and a Fast-Track Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA).

Academic Publications:

ORCID Academic Page:

  • C. MacPartholán, “The PCSCA 2022: Prevention of Crime, Protest and Politics” (2022) 165 (8) Solicitors Journal 22.

  • C. MacPartholán, “A rupture in the Counter-Terrorism and Sentencing Act 2021” (2022) 165 (3) Solicitors Journal 22.

  • C. MacPartholán, “Hidden hate: Hate crime and NCHIs” (2022) 165 (1) Solicitors Journal 40.

  • C. MacPartholán, “The Cart before the horse: Reform and Cart Judicial Review” (2021) 164 (9) Solicitors Journal 43.

  • C. MacPartholán, “Safe as houses? The Domestic Abuse Act 2021” (2021) 164 (8) Solicitors Journal 28.

  • C. MacPartholán, “Release Under Investigation: Times are changing?” (2021) 171 (7940) New Law Journal 15.

  • C. MacPartholán, “Keeping it simple” (2020) 170 (7910) New Law Journal 17 (JR & appeals & Magistrates’ Courts).

  • C. MacPartholán (Lead Author) and C. Hodgetts (Assistant), “In the firing line?: The Effects of the Policing and Crime Act 2017 on Fire and Rescue Services” (2021, for Public Law – and of relevance to the Grenfell Inquiry).

  • C. MacPartholán, “RUI: Restraining or Reframing Re-bailing?: The effect of the Policing and Crime Act 2017 on Pre-Charge Bail” (2023 – in progress).

  • C. MacPartholán and C. Hodgetts, “An Evolution in Devolution?: Welsh Criminal Justice and the Commission on Justice in Wales” [2021] 1(1) Criminal Law Review 34 (Commissioned paper on Lord Thomas’ Review).

  • C. MacPartholán, “Arresting Developments: The Post-Brexit Future of European Arrest Warrants” (2020) 84 (2) Journal of Criminal Law 124 (DOI:

  • C. MacPartholán, “Court in the Act: Procedural Progression in the Law of Arrest, Detention and Failure to Answer to Bail” (2019) 83(3) Journal of Criminal Law 195 (DOI:

  • C. MacPartholán, “Access Denied: Pro bono and the Truncated Right to Justice” (2018) 182 JPN 27 (CLJW).

  • C. MacPartholán, “Evolution of an Erosion: The Historico-Legal Development of Sections 34-38 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994” (2017) 81 (2) Journal of Criminal Law 103 (DOI:

  • C. MacPartholán, “Silencing silence?” (2016) 180 JPN 812 (Criminal Law and Justice Weekly).

Academic Qualifications:

  • PhD by Published Works – ongoing (Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure, Evidence): Bangor University.

  • My PhD is by Published Works on Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure and Evidence, with research interests in the legal and jurisprudential approaches to the privilege against self-incrimination, the right to silence, and public order matters.

  • LLM (By Research) – BPP Holborn – Criminal Appeals and JR in the Magistrates’ Court: (Dissertation 71%).

  • My LLM by Research consisted of an academic analysis article and a practitioner article on the above areas. Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC) – BPP Manchester – Competent, 67% (Called July 2021).

Law Lecturing & CPD Qualifications:

  • Module Leading (UCEM);

  • Module Tutoring (UCEM);

  • Module Marking (UCEM);

  • Project Supervision (UCEM);

  • Safeguarding Children & Young People (UCEM);

  • Safeguarding in FE (Education and Training Foundation);

  • Data Protection: Pre- and Post- GDPR & DPA 2018 (UCEM);

  • Equality and Diversity (ACAS);

  • Prevent (Official Course);

  • UCEM “Prevent” Training Lecturers’ Certificate (UCEM);

  • Action Counters Terrorism Awareness E-Learning Certificate (Highbury Learning).

Awards and Boards:

  • OUP Legal Textbooks: Academic Reviewer OUP – my review of Choo on Evidence features on its cover.

  • Peer Review Panel Member: Panel Member of the International Journal of Emergency Services (IJES).

  • UCEM Lecturer Award: Won the international UCEM 2019-2020 Lecturer Values Award.

  • UCEM Academic Board (Tutor Representative): Sat on UCEM’s institutional Academic Board (HE Governance).

Prior Academic and Professional Positions:

  • External Marker: Criminal & Tort Law – SOAS University, London (2022-2023).

  • External Marker: Law – Frontline Fellowship, Lancaster University (2020-present)

  • Examiner and Marker: Law: Frontline Fellowship scheme at Lancaster University for trainee Social Workers.

  • Law Tutor and Dissertation Supervisor – University College of Estate Management (2016-2020).

  • Examiner and Marker on LLM (QCF L7) Modules: Construction Law; Law for Surveyors; Legal Studies.

  • Dissertation Supervisor & Examiner: Law: UG and PG distance learning Masters’ students (QCF Level 7).

  • Associate Tutor and SQA Material Developer in Law – Manchester College/MOL (2015-2017).

  • Associate Tutor and SQA Material Developer in Law – Manchester College/MOL (2015-2017).

  • Associate Tutor and SQA Material Developer in Law – Manchester College/MOL (2015-2017).

  • Associate Tutor and SQA Material Developer in Law – Manchester College/MOL (2015-2017).

  • Associate Tutor and SQA Material Developer in Law – Manchester College/MOL (2015-2017).

  • Associate Tutor and SQA Material Developer in Law – Manchester College/MOL (2015-2017).

  • Lead, delivered & marked Law subjects: CLC SQA Level 4 & Level 6 Conveyancing & Probate Diplomas.

  • Author/Developer on SQA Course Handbooks Review: Updated and redesigned materials and questions in National CLC Course Handbooks for Conveyancing Law (Level 4) and Landlord and Tenant Law (Level 6).

  • Assistant Examiner – Oxford, Cambridge and RSA Examination Board (Summer 2018).

  • Assisted with undertaking marking of A Level papers in my specialist areas – including A Level Sociology.

  • University Court Visit Supervisor & Practical Lecturer – Bangor University (December 2017).

  • Court Visit Supervisor for BA (Hons) Journalism UG students in Crown Court cases (Law Court Reporting).

  • Land and Estate Management: Tenant Farmer (1990-2000): This position included the management of rural land, buildings, and associated undertakings, bookkeeping, husbandry, and rural community engagement, over a period of some years. This was a self-employed role.

  • Financial Sector: Case Researcher – Glenmede Trust Financial Services (2000s): This role, some years ago, included researching capital investments & working with hedge fund investors.

Pro bono:

Pro Bono Inquest Work: Attorney-General’s Fiat: Re Siaron Lowis Bonds (2016-2019):

  • I worked alongside a Bangor University team, pro bono, on this case – an application to the Attorney-General for his Fiat to hold an inquest (s.13 Coroners Act 1988). The application was considered favourably, but Senior Area Coroner granted an inquest prior to a formal decision, after correspondence with the AG.

  • The inquest was held, 25 years on – witnesses included haemato-oncologists and a medical expert witness.

  • I assisted on the preparation of the papers and questions for both PIH and inquest.

  • I attended at a lengthy conference with the bereaved family, and a complex 1 day PIH.

  • The case received press coverage in local and national newspapers following the inquest.

Caseworker, Innocence Casework Unit (ICU): Appeals & CCRC applications (2015-2017):

  • Clinical Legal Education work (pro bono, with Bangor University School of Law), including reviewing case files, liaising with clients, and working on applications to the Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC).

  • My cases included murder, serious offences, and joint enterprise cases (pre- and post- Jogee and Johnson).

  • Attended and observed criminal appeal hearings in the CoA, in my own time, for further appellate insight.

Mental Health and Social Welfare Outreach: Voluntary Work (2000s):

  • While abroad, I volunteered with St Paul’s Community Outreach Programme as a Mentor at after-school classes (educational and social) for pupils in underprivileged areas, with substance abuse or welfare concerns at home.