Brexit court case: Who is Gina Miller? – she wins case!
Investment manager Gina Miller has been the lead claimant in the case to get Parliament to vote on whether the UK can start the process of leaving the EU – but who is she?
Ms Miller, 51, is an investment manager and philanthropist who was born in Guyana but grew up in Britain, co-founding the investment firm in 2009.
She launched True and Fair with her hedge fund manager husband, Alan, which campaigns against mis-selling and hidden fund charges in the City of London’s fund management industry.
According to an interview with the Financial Times in April, this has led some in the industry to label her the “black-widow spider”.
Speaking about a time she asked three men at an industry party why they were staring at her, she told the paper: “One of them replied that I was a disgrace and that my lobbying efforts would bring down the entire City.”
Her charity, the True and Fair Foundation, formerly known as Miller Philanthropy, was launched in 2009. The foundation says it supports smaller charities by providing funding and support. Charity Commission records show it spent £135,982 in 2015.
‘All leavers now’
Ms Miller launched the Brexit legal case along with London-based Spanish hairdresser Deir Dos Santos and the People’s Challenge group, set up by Grahame Pigney and backed by a crowd-funding campaign.
Three London law firms – Mishcon de Reya, Edwin Coe and Bindmans – agreed to take up the case.
Ms Miller has argued that only Parliament can make a decision that leads to the loss of her “rights” under EU law.
But she has stressed throughout that the challenge is not an attempt to overturn the referendum decision, telling BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “We are all leavers now.”
Speaking after the High Court announced its verdict, Ms Miller told the BBC the case was about scrutinising the details of Brexit, such as “how we leave, how they’re going to negotiate, the directions of travel the government will take”.
She said: “What we’re saying is, very simply, you can’t have it both ways. You can’t talk about getting back a sovereign Parliament and being in control but at the same time then bypass it.”
Ms Miller added that the challenge was about more than Brexit.
“This case is far more fundamental than that.
“It is about any government, any prime minister, in the future being able to take away people’s rights without consulting Parliament.
“We cannot have a democracy like that. That isn’t a democracy, that is verging on dictatorship.”
Brexit court defeat for UK government
Parliament must vote on whether the UK can start the process of leaving the EU, the High Court has ruled.
This means the government cannot trigger Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty – beginning formal exit negotiations with the EU – on its own.
Theresa May says the referendum – and existing ministerial powers – mean MPs do not need to vote, but campaigners called this unconstitutional.
The government is appealing, with a further hearing expected next month.