Jonathan O’Brien has been jailed for 13 years after abusing boys as young as ten in the 1980s.

A packed-out public gallery watched O’Brien’s sentencing for 15 counts of indecent assault on children aged between ten and 15. A number of his victims were at the court today. One of them said in a victim impact statement: “I can’t quantify exactly what impact this has had on me and therein lies the tragedy. “How would I be if this hadn’t happened? Would I be more successful, more patient, more passionate? I don’t know, which is sad.” The indecent assaults took place when O’Brien was a teacher at the Oratory School, near Reading, and Winterfold House School, near Kidderminster. O’Brien still proclaims his innocence and during the trial last year many witnesses shed tears as they were subjected to lengthy cross examination by O’Brien’s lawyer. Sentencing, his honour judge Robert Fraser spoke of the suffering recounted in victim impact statements: “The sentiments expressed reflect the evidence that each of them gave in court – a number of them unable to hold back tears as they were forced to relive your abuse.” He added: “It was abundantly clear from the understandably emotional evidence they gave during your trial that your actions have left a very dark shadow which each them has had to find ways to deal with.” O’Brien was given sentences of eight years, seven years, six years and four years concurrently, with a five-year term to be served consecutively. He will serve half the total sentence in prison and the other half out on licence. O’Brien was visibly shocked at the verdict, with Judge Fraser saying: “You have never accepted your guilt.” He was originally charged with 28 counts and stood trial last November. He was convicted in December of 15 counts of indecent assault and five counts of gross indecency by the jury. He appealed the conviction this year, but was successful only in overturning the gross indecency convictions. O’Brien was made subject to a sexual offences prevention order and will be on the sex offenders’ register for the rest of his life. If you or a loved one were subject to abuse at the hands of O'Brien please do not hesitate to contact Charles Derham our specialist child abuse solicitor. We will treat any communications with the strictest of confidence.


Lisa has more than 20 years’ experience of dealing with Personal Injury matters ranging from road traffic accidents to workplace injury and liability. She offers a sympathetic and professional approach to her clients’ problems and advises on funding options (including insurance and Conditional Fee Agreements.)

Her extensive knowledge of the Civil Procedure Rules, skills in evidence gathering and analysis of liability and causation, and experience in risk assessment and settlement negotiation make her a valuable asset to clients and colleagues alike.

She is also a member of Verisona Law’s Historic Abuse Team and undertakes documentary analysis, work relating to case evidence and the development of legal arguments to secure successful settlements. She is fluent in German and Persian.

Lisa also has experience in Civil Litigation regarding Debt Recovery, Breach of Contract, and Insolvency Law.

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"I would like to express my profound heartfelt gratitude to Lisa Gafarov for all her hard work and understanding when representing me. She fought passionately for my case for two years.

Within this time, never once did I feel it was about the money for her. She was very considerate and dealt with many personal matters in a caring and professional way. It was a very sensitive case but she put in a lot of hard work and went the extra mile each time. Her wide range of expertise was indispensable during this difficult time. Because of this I trusted all her advice and as a result, this took a lot of pressure off of me.

She managed to reach a very amicable conclusion between the defendants and myself. You don’t know how much your passion impacts the lives of others. For this I am forever grateful. I would recommend your firm a hundred times over."
Anonymous, April 2019

Lisa studied ‘Contract Law, European Law and Employment Law’ as part of her degree in BA (Hons) Business Administration. She has also studied other business subjects, including accounting.

Having completed her degree, Lisa started work for Verisona Law in November 1999 in the Personal Injury department as a Trainee Litigation Clerk and since then has developed extensive skills in relation to personal injury litigation and case preparation.

  • Road traffic accidents
  • Accidents at work
  • Slip and trip claims
  • Occupier’s liability claims
  • Product Liability claims
  • Industrial disease claims
  • Work related upper limb disorder claims
  • Clinical negligence, including amputation claims
  • Cosmetic surgery claims
  • Abuse claims

"Thank you for all your much appreciated hard work. I will truly never forget your kindness towards me. Your patience, respect and understanding at all times was beyond words. The sincere compassion shown meant more to me than words could ever express. This firm will forever hold a special place in my heart."

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