The life and times of Bob Amsterdam

How a Canadian lawyer obtained a British bodyguard

By Todd Harrison

On Monday January 10th, 2011


On Saturday, the Toronto Star ran a profile of Canadian lawyer Bob Amsterdam, a prominent international defender of human rights — and, as Star legal affairs reporter Tracey Tyler writes, “probably the only graduate of an Ontario law school who employs a former British Special Air Services commando as a bodyguard.”

The piece chronicles U.K.-based Amsterdam’s formative years, and some of his many legal fights on behalf of people oppressed by authoritarian regimes. It also describes a few of the encounters Amsterdam has had as a result of what he’s best known for: “going into developing countries where the rule of law is often non-existent and attempting to hold political leaders accountable for alleged abuses of power — often relying on the power of public relations.”

Read the profile here.