John Goss appears in Supreme Court for Classics for All mock trial

27 October 2022

On 26 October 2022, John Goss appeared in the UK Supreme Court on the much-delayed case of Director of Athenian Prosecutions v Alexander the Great, a (mock) criminal trial for war crimes. John appeared for the prosecution, led by Philippe Sands KC, trying to secure Alexander’s conviction for the destruction of Persepolis in 331/330 BCE.

The case was presided over by Lord Leggatt JSC and a jury from the Classics for All Lawyers’ Group. Alexander was acquitted of all charges, persuaded by the defence argument that applying modern standards to Alexander’s actions would be anachronistic.

Classics for All is a charity dedicated to the expansion of classical languages in state schools. It runs an annual mock trial in the Supreme Court – previous cases have involved the arraignment of Boudicca on terrorism charges, the extradition of Gaius Verres from Sicily, and the (re-)trial of Socrates. More information can be found here.

The case has been covered in The Times (subscription required).


John Goss

Call 2015


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