Frances McMenamin QC

Black Chambers

Frances McMenamin QC has become recognised as the top female criminal defence counsel, appearing constantly in the High Court, particularly in murder, rape and other sexual offences cases.

In addition to her work as defence counsel, mostly in the High Court, her highly regarded experience has led, over the years, to a number of appointments. Since 1991, she has been a visiting lecturer at The Scottish Police College. She was a Temporary Sheriff from 1991 until her appointment as an Advocate Depute in 1997. From then until 2000, she prosecuted High Court trials and represented the Crown in the Appeal Court. Thereafter she returned to establish a very busy practise in the High Court as Senior Counsel for the defence, having taken silk in 1998. In 2009 she was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by Strathclyde University. In 2010 she was appointed to be a member of the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission until 2018. In 2014, Lord Bonomy invited her to be one of his expert group to assist with his Post Corroboration Review, published in April 2015.

She is a member of Lady Dorrian's review group looking at the management of sexual offences and a member of the Scottish Government's governance group concerning joint investigative interviews.