Flight MH370 conspiracy theory barrister used to be an immigration judge

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By Thomas Connelly on

Barrister who claims Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 was shot down by the Chinese previously held position as an Immigration Appeal Judge.


Last week we highlighted a surprising claim made by Michael Shrimpton, a practising barrister, about the fate of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370. Shrimpton wrote that the flight had been shot down by a missile fired from a Chinese submarine. Previously, the former Tanfield Chambers barrister who now practises from his own chambers has stated that Madeleine McCann was “murdered on the orders of German Intelligence”.

It has since emerged that Shrimpton used to sit as a judge, making his penchant for conspiracy theories even more surprising.


Of his time in the Immigration Appeal Tribunal, Shrimpton told Legal Cheek:

“I was indeed a part-time Chairman of the Immigration Appeal Tribunal, from 1992 until my resignation. I also sat as a Special Adjudicator, hearing political asylum cases. A number of former immigration officers sat as lay members and I dealt with a small number of cases involving intelligence officers, or claimed intelligence officers, seeking asylum.

“Despite it being a contentious area very few of my decisions were overturned. I only recall being overturned by the Court of Appeal once, in the De Noronha case, where my Tribunal had been confronted with two different strands on the authority on the returning residents rule. In that case I granted leave to appeal to the Court of Appeal to the Home Office myself.

“I was the first Adjudicator to refer questions of law to the European Court of Justice, which heard the reference in plenary session. Of course I bring the same degree of intellectual rigour to my intelligence work as I do to my Bar work and as I did when sitting judicially.”

A spokesperson for the Judicial Office said:

“He no longer sits so we wouldn’t comment.”