Melinka Berridge



‘Astute, inventive and clever’

Legal 500 UK 2017

"Her knowledge of the regulatory process and issues is excellent and her attention to detail is second to none."

Chambers UK, A Clients Guide to the UK Legal Profession, 2018

Melinka is a regulatory and criminal lawyer specialising in the field of private prosecutions. Her practice encompasses all areas of regulatory enforcement and she is highly ranked in the UK’s leading legal directories in the field of professional discipline.

Private Prosecutions

Melinka leads the team at Kingsley Napley responsible for bringing regulatory and private prosecutions.  She works with individuals, businesses, charities and public bodies helping them to understand whether a case is suitable for criminal prosecution. Where a case is suitable she helps her clients navigate the complex criminal justice system to ensure their rights are protected and advanced.  

Melinka is a founding member and the Executive Secretary of the Private Prosecutors’ Association. She sits as a panellist on the RSPCA Prosecutions Oversight Panel. She is also a member of the Advisory Board to the Victims of Crime Association of Lawyers

Health and Safety

Melinka represents those facing health and safety investigations and prosecutions.  She acts for directors and senior officers when they are being held personally liable for offences committed by or in connection with their companies. She has specialist expertise in the leisure, catering and hospitality sectors.

Leisure and Gambling

Prior to joining Kingsley Napley, Melinka was the Head of Licensing for one of the UK’s leading pub companies. She continues to act for operators and individuals across the licensed trade, leisure and gambling sectors. She helps clients to respond to the threat of enforcement and where required, defend against action taken by local authorities, independent regulators and the state enforcement agencies. 

Professional Discipline and Regulatory Enforcement

In the field of professional discipline and regulatory enforcement Melinka represents some of the UK’s leading national regulators. Her expertise is in helping regulators to take proportionate enforcement action against those who fall short of their standards or break the law.  She represents and has worked with the following bodies:

  • The Health and Care Professions Council
  • The Teaching Regulation Agency
  • The Education Workforce Council
  • The Institute and Faculty of Actuaries
  • The Architects Registration Board
  • The General Optical Council
  • The General Dental Council
  • The Office of Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem)
  • The Electoral Commission
  • The Security Industry Authority

Melinka has also successfully defended professionals who have been investigated for misconduct by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, the Nursing and Midwifery Council and the General Chiropractic Council.

Melinka is a dual-qualified practitioner.  She was initially admitted as barrister and solicitor to the High Court of New Zealand where she worked as a Crown Prosecutor for the Crown Solicitor of Wellington. Melinka is a Solicitor Advocate (Criminal) in England and Wales.

Melinka is a founding member of firm’s Diversity and Inclusion group as well as their LGBTQ* & Allies network .


What clients and directories say

 "Her knowledge of the regulatory process and issues is excellent and her attention to detail is second to none."

Chambers UK, A Clients Guide to the UK Legal Profession, 2018

"…Astute, inventive and clever.”

Legal 500 UK, 2017

“… talented, very intelligent and very well thought of in the space.”

Chambers UK, A Clients Guide to the UK Legal Profession, 2016

“…Outstanding in terms of preparation and presentation.”

Chambers UK, A Clients Guide to the UK Legal Profession, 2015

“… is considered ‘exceptionally well-prepared, concise, articulate, responsive and unfailingly courteous’.”

Legal 500 UK, 2014

“…has total command, meticulous preparation and I think she’s outstanding in all respects…”

Chambers UK,  A Clients Guide to the UK Legal Profession, 2013


Recent cases

  • Advising a client on various matters arising out of the Grenfell Tower fire.
  • Advising a corporate and its directors on a private prosecution against a number of competitor businesses regarding a conspiracy to defraud.
  • Representing an individual who conducted a private prosecution against a former business partner for forgery in respect of a planning agreement.
  • Advising a national charity on the merits of commencing a private prosecution in circumstances where the local authority had failed to prosecute.  
  • Advising two national industry regulators on the use of criminal investigation and enforcement powers in conjunction with their civil enforcement regime.
  • Representing witnesses in state run criminal proceedings to ensure that their interests and reputation were protected throughout the proceedings.
  • Advising a Chief Executive of a Fitness Club of his personal liability in respect of regulatory and criminal offences committed within his business.
  • Defending an individual who was facing allegations of illegal or unregistered practice by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.
  • Acting for a several London-based private members’ clubs in respect of their licensing matters. 
  • Representing an individual subject to a review of their personal management licence by the Gambling Commission.
  • Appearing as a presenting officer in various high profile and complex cases on behalf the regulators responsible for regulating the teaching profession in both England and Wales.

Professional societies and memberships

recent publications

 Her knowledge of the regulatory process and issues is excellent and her attention to detail is second to none.

Chambers UK, A Clients Guide to the UK Legal Profession,  2018

"…Astute, inventive and clever.”

Legal 500 UK 2017 command, utterly organised and entirely efficient.

Chambers UK, A Clients Guide to the UK Legal Profession,  2017

...talented, very intelligent and very well thought of in the space.

Chambers UK, A Clients Guide to the UK Legal Profession,  2016

...known for the high calibre of her work. Sources describe her as 'an unsung hero' and 'a heavyweight'...

Chambers UK, A Clients Guide to the UK Legal Profession,  2014

...'“The ‘truly outstanding' Melinka Berridge, who leads the team that acts for the National College for Teaching and Leadership, is considered ‘exceptionally well-prepared, concise, articulate, responsive and unfailingly courteous'.”

Legal 500 UK 2014

...'has total command, meticulous preparation, and I think she's outstanding in all respects'...

Chambers UK, A Clients Guide to the UK Legal Profession,  2013

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Insight from Melinka

View all


Private prosecutions and the shape of things to come

Using private prosecutions against dishonest employees - an alternative to dismissal that could deter repeat offending

Good news, bad news - costs in private prosecutions

When not to commence a private prosecution

Grant of POCA powers to additional bodies welcomed by those who enforce and prosecute regulatory crime

Impeding freedom of speech - disciplinary offence or legitimate protest?

Launch of the Code for Private Prosecutors

Letter to a Homophobe

The duty of candour applies to represented and unrepresented private prosecutors

Identity Fraud: company directors at double the risk of other individuals

Justice delayed is not justice denied in a recent slip and trip case successfully prosecuted by Aviva

Health and Safety Sentencing – Three years on and now for the bad news…

Tackling fraud: more must be done

Transphobic comments give rise to private prosecution

The rise of private prosecutions for insurers

#PrideMatters at Kingsley Napley

Malicious prosecution and the risk to private prosecutors

Private prosecutions for crimes against wildlife

Caution Needed - Private Prosecutions and Criminal Cautions

DPP consent in private prosecutions

Starting a private prosecution; getting it right first time

The good, the bad and mixed motives: when will the private prosecutor’s motives justify stopping the prosecution?

Private Prosecution of Summer Holiday Fraudsters

Private prosecutions – What should victims do when the traditional law enforcement agencies fail to act?

Guilty pleasures – securing a reduction in sentence for guilty pleas in health & safety cases

Health and Safety Executive consults on fee for intervention disputes

Crowdfunding private prosecutions – charities taking action when the authorities do not

IWD: Kingsley Napley recognising the connection between gender equality and positive business outcomes.

Families affected by Glasgow bin lorry tragedy refused leave to mount a private prosecution

Private prosecutions - What should fraud victims do when law enforcement agencies fail to act?

Equal Pay Day – What does gender equality mean at Kingsley Napley?

Reminder of the importance of disclosure obligations: Successful appeal by two teachers challenging failure of their regulator to give proper disclosure

Successful appeal challenging jurisdiction of the Secretary of State for Education to make orders in relation to former teachers

Glasgow bin lorry tragedy – families express firm intention to mount a private prosecution in the wake of the findings from the Fatal Accident Inquiry

The end of self-regulation for charities? Government report recommends new fundraising regulator

RSPCA approach to private prosecution: As crooked as a dog’s hind leg?

Understanding diversity and inclusion: what it means at Kingsley Napley

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Chambers 2019
Legal 500 2019

Contact Melinka

+44 (0)20 7814 1245

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