Professor Vanezis qualified from Bristol University in 1972 (MB, ChB). In 1976 he was awarded the Diploma in Medical Jurisprudence (Pathology) (DMJ(Path). In 1978 he became a member of the Royal College of Pathologists and a Fellow of the college in 1990 (FRCPath). He was awarded his doctorate in medicine (MD) from Bristol University in 1985 for research into vertebral artery trauma. In 1990 he was awarded a doctor philosophy (PhD) from London University for research into “sudden death and the menstrual cycle.” In 1996 he became a member of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow proceeding to fellow in 1998 (FRCP(Glasg.) . Recently he was elected as a Founding Fellow of the Faculty of Forensic Medicine of the Royal College of Physicians in 2006 (FFFLM).
He has been a practicing forensic pathologist since 1974 and has held a number of academic and service appointments up to the current day.

His current appointments in forensic medicine include:

  1. Professor in Forensic Medical Sciences at Barts and the London (Queen Mary University of London)  and Director of  the Cameron Centre for Forensic Medical Sciences at Barts and the London, February 2006-
  2. Member of Yorkshire and Humberside Group Practice, Medico-Legal Centre Sheffield, 2006-
  3. Senior Honorary Civilian Consultant in Forensic Medicine to the Armed Forces, Appointed by the Ministry of Defence July, 1992-
  4. Visiting Professor of Forensic Sciences, London South Bank University, London, 2000-
  5. Visiting Professor of Forensic Medicine and Science, University of Glasgow 2003-
  6. Home Office Pathologist, 1990-1993 and 2003-
  7. Honorary Professor in Forensic Medicine at the University of Hong Kong 2003-

His  past appointments in forensic medicine include:

  1. Chief Forensic Medical Officer and Head of the Department of Forensic Medical Sciences at the Forensic Science Service, London Laboratory 2003-2006
  2. Regius Professor of Forensic Medicine and Science and Head of Department of Forensic Medicine & Science, The University of Glasgow, October 1993-2003
  3. Director General and Founder of The Centre for International Forensic Assistance (CIFA), July 2001- 2003
  4. Reader and Head of Department of Forensic Medicine and Toxicology, Charing Cross and Westminster Medical School, London, 1990-1993
  5. Senior Lecturer (lecturer from 1974) in Forensic Medicine at The London Hospital Medical College, August 1979 - September 1990
  6. Deputy Police Surgeon (Metropolitan),1977 -1979


  1. Past President of the British Academy of Forensic Sciences
  2. Past President of the British Association for Human Identification


He became an Officer of the Order of the British Empire awarded in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List June 2001, for Forensic Pathology Services in Kosovo.
He is a member of a number of examining boards in forensic medicine and has served from time to time on college and medical school committees

The examining boards include:

  1. Royal College of Pathologists, Forensic Pathology, 1990-
  2. Society of Apothecaries London: Diploma and Mastership in Medical Jurisprudence, 1981-Diploma in Legal Medicine and M.D. (Forensic Medicine) Sri-Lanka. 1995-
  3. Chief examiner and convenor of  Diploma in Forensic Medical Sciences,  Society of Apothecaries (DFMS) 1993-2003
  4. Convenor, Diploma in Forensic Human Identification, society of Apothecaries, 2002-
  5. External examiner in Forensic Medicine, University of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur 2001-
  6. External examiner Hong Kong College of Pathologists, 1999-

Committees include:

  1. One of U.K. members of  European Council of Legal Medicine (Harmonization and standardization of Forensic Medicine within the European Community), 1987-
  2. General Medical Council, Assessor in Forensic Pathology,  2000-
  3. Member of the Northern Ireland Human Organs Inquiry team under the Chairmanship of John O’Hare QC. 2001-2
  4. Scottish Subgroup in Hospital/Fiscal autopsy practice and standards 2002-3
  5. Refugee doctors Health Council Working Group 2001-2004

General service experience: Professor Vanezis began his career in Forensic Medicine in 1974 and has conducted in excess of 2,000 suspicious death autopsies, of which approximately 1,500 were homicides. He has also carried out approximately 800 examinations on behalf of the defence. He has also carried out autopsies abroad, at the request of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and in his capacity as Honorary Civilian Consultant to the Armed Forces. He has carried out autopsies on behalf of the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal in the former Yugoslavia and in Rwanda. He was the supervising pathologist to the British Forensic Team, acting on behalf of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office 1n 1999 and 2000. In addition he has assisted with identification of deceased from mass graves in Chile, and Sri-Lanka. He has also been involved in the Genocide Project Programme organised by the University of San Francisco. He was appointed to an International Comission in 1994 to investigate the death of the former president of Georgia, Zviad Gamsakhurdia. He has been the supervising pathologist in a number of multiple death incidents (major disasters). These include: The Charing Cross Road (Soho) Fire (37 victims), The Marine Barracks Bombing at Deal (11 victims), The Kathmandu (Thai Airways) air crash (113 victims) and The Chinook Helicopter Crash near Campbeltown (29 victims). He has also participated in the Tarom air crash investigation in Bucharest in 1995.

Academic activities: His research interests include facial identification, forensic pathology, especially in relation timing of injuries and projects involving the next of kin of deceased persons reported to the coroner. During the last six years he has successfully received over one million pounds in research grants. He also teaches regularly to both undergraduates and postgraduate students and co-ordinates a number of postgraduate courses. He has also published widely in forensic medicine in peer reviewed journals has edited two books and contributed to a number of other textbooks.

Other related activities
Professor Vanezis has appeared in a number of television programmes in relation to his work including a Horizon programme on the Iceman and Crimewatch UK. He also gives interviews to radio programmes and was a castaway on Desert Island Discs with Sue Lawley.
He has been included in Who’s Who and Debrett’s ‘People of Today’ since 1994.
He also continues to have a professional interest as a forensic medical expert into the investigation of the death of Diana, Princess of Wales


Date created 8/03/2007