Guy joined Carter-Ruck in 1988 and has been a partner since 1990.  As head of the firm’s International department Guy has a wide-ranging practice in the field of Public International Law, European Law and Human Rights involving administrative and regulatory processes with an international or diplomatic context.

Having developed his media law expertise under the personal tutelage of Peter Carter-Ruck, Guy has since acquired a special expertise in the law relating to economic sanctions. His work is at the forefront of the field of challenges to asset freezing measures, or ‘targeted sanctions’. He is highly rated in these areas by the legal directories and viewed as a sanctions expert.

Guy has represented and advised many clients who have challenged such sanctions measures before a range of tribunals including the High Court in London, the General Court and the ECJ in Luxembourg as well as before the United Nations Office of the Ombudsperson in New York. Frequently Guy has been able to deploy his media law expertise in the context of his sanctions work.

Guy coordinated the leading case on targeted sanctions, heading successful international efforts by Saudi Arabian businessman and philanthropist Sheikh Yassin Abdullah Kadi since 2001, to overturn asset freezing orders around the world, wrongly imposed in the aftermath of the horrific 11 September attacks.

Guy is also a media litigation and reputation management specialist and his practice has a particular emphasis on copyright, trademarks, breach of confidence and other intellectual property issues arising in a media context.

  • Guy is highlighted as a Leading Individual for Public International Law – Legal 500
  • Legal 500 sources report that Guy is ‘brilliant’ and has ‘impeccable judgement, with an exceptional work ethic and fundamental decency – a powerful combination.‘
  • Guy co-authored Global Investigations Review’s Guide to Sanctions (Second Edition) July 2021
  • Global Investigation Review’s Guide to Sanctions (First Edition) August 2020.  The Guide is the first of its kind to clearly dissect UN Sanctions in a practical and concise manner
  • Report on the UK implementation of the first autonomous sanctions for human rights abuses (co-written with Charles Enderby Smith and Blackstone Chambers)
  • Chambers 2020 sources report he is ‘extremely intelligent, diligent, responsive and a delight to work with’ and that ‘his practice encompasses a wide range of issues pertaining to public international law, international sanctions and human rights advice’
  • Legal 500 2020 highlights Guy as an Elite Leading Lawyer for Public International Law and ‘peerless in international sanctions work, with a combination of huge experience and excellent client care’. Market sources also report ‘Guy Martin leaves no stone unturned; his combination of legal knowledge, political savviness and client care is second to none.’
  • Guy is Highly Commended in the 2018 WorldECR Awards, the leading journal for sanctions and export controls practitioners, in the category ‘Practitioner of the Year’. The magazine, published, reports that Guy’s work ‘is at the forefront of the field of challenges to asset freezing measures, or ‘targeted sanctions’.
  • The Legal 500 directory says Guy is ‘wonderful with clients’
  • In the media context, Guy is described by Legal 500 as a ‘star’. Guy has over 20 years’ experience in media law, specifically in copyright, trademarks, breach of confidence/ privacy and other issues arising in a media context as well as general libel and reputation management work
  • Guy is a regular noted speaker at legal conferences he has presented seminars at New York University, University College London, and the International Bar Association. He has written for the Centre for International Legal Studies on Jurisdiction and Dispute Resolution
  • Guy represented Mr Kadi in his two successful appeals to the ECJ in 2008 and 2013. In its 2008 judgment the ECJ delivered a landmark decision in favour of Mr Kadi and struck down EU asset freezing regulations on the ground they breached Mr Kadi’s fundamental human rights. It was as a result of this judgment that the Office of the Ombudsperson was created by the UN Security Council in December 2009.

The ECJ’s judgment in this case, which has become known as Kadi I, has been described by leading academic commentators as ‘the most important judgment ever delivered by the ECJ on the relationship between EC and international law and one of its most important judgments on fundamental rights’.

  • Guy has represented clients from Syria, Tunisia, Burma (Myanmar) and Zimbabwe in the targeted sanctions field. Guy acted for Burmese national Pye Phyo Tay Za both in his action before the General Court, and subsequent successful appeal to the Grand Chamber of the ECJ, which in March 2012 annulled European asset freezing orders applicable to Mr Tay Za.
  • In the media context he has acted for Sovereign States, high-ranking dignitaries, leading business people, universities, celebrities, religious leaders, and multi-national corporations.
  • Guy is a member of the British Literary and Copyright Association, Chatham House, the Intellectual Property Lawyers Association, the American Society for International Law and the European Society for International Law.