Raphael Rowe: Biography highlights

Raphael Rowe is the presenter of Inside the World’s Toughest Prisons on Netflix. He is also a reporter/presenter for The One Show and Sunday Morning Live on BBC One.

Known for:

TV Presenters and Broadcasters

Languages spoken:


Full biography of Raphael Rowe

Raphael Rowe’s background

Raphael joined the BBC in 2001 as a reporter for the Radio 4 News Programme, Today and went on to report for many years on BBC One’s flagship current affairs television programme, Panorama before becoming freelance in 2016.

In 2017 he was one of the celebrity Pilgrims who walked the Camino de Santiago in Spain for the BBC Two series, Pilgimage: The Road to Santiago.

Raphael’s path to becoming a reporter and presenter has been unique and remarkable.

In 1988, aged 20, he was sentenced to life imprisonment for a murder and robbery he did not commit. In July 2000, after 12 years in prison, the Court of Appeal quashed his wrongful convictions and he was freed.

After a year travelling the world, Raphael returned to the UK determined to become a reporter. Raphael is self-educated on the criminal justice system and, against the odds during his years in prison he studied journalism through a correspondence course.

As the subject of numerous stories by broadcast and print journalists during his long campaign for justice, Raphael has a unique insight into both sides of the reporting coin.

Through his singular background, and as the first person of mixed race to report for Today, the Six O’clock News and Panorama, Raphael helped re-write the rules on what makes a BBC reporter.

Two years after joining the BBC in 2003 he became BBC Three’s launch current affairs presenter and undercover reporter on a number of programmes including: Movers, Shakers and Crack Takers, Gangland Manchester and Blood Diamonds the exploitation, and routes, used by terrorists to smuggle conflict diamonds.

He also presented a number of programmes for BBC Two including ‘This World: Locked in Paradise’ and ‘Who Killed Kelso Cochrane?’. He also conducted a fascinating three-part investigation, which revealed the UK’s first criminal underworld rich list.

Raphael’s investigation for Panorama into the murder of Jill Dando cast doubts on firearms forensic evidence used at the trial of Barry George, who was convicted of killing the BBC TV presenter. In August 2008, Barry George was acquitted at a retrial and freed.

During his time at Panorama, he reported on a wide range of issues, including Bursting the House Price Bubble, Addiction to Games, Track my Trash, Jailed for a Knife, Smugglers Tales, Orphans of Haiti, Kill at Will: America on trial, Children’s Fight Club, DIY Justice. In Death on Corfu he uncovered crucial information that helped the parents of the two children who died from carbon monoxide poisoning whilst on a Thomas Cook package holiday.

Raphael has reported from some of the most dangerous and hostile places in the world, Afghanistan, Democratic Republic of Congo, Sierra Leone, Borneo, Nigeria, Jamaica, Beirut and Haiti to name a few.

Although Raphael is a skilled investigative journalist, he is also a confident, warm, genuine and experienced presenter on BBC’s The One Show. Whether live in the studio or buzzing around the country reporting on topical stories Raphael is a popular presenter on prime time television and inspiration to an underserved and diverse audience.



Show more

Available for:

After Dinner Engagement
Guest Appearance

Watch Raphael in action

1/4 videos
Life After My Lockdown | Raphael Rowe | TEDxWarwick
Life After My Lockdown | Raphael Rowe | TEDxWarwick
RAPHAEL ROWE | Wrongly Sentenced To Life & Visiting The World's Toughest Prisons
RAPHAEL ROWE | Wrongly Sentenced To Life & Visiting The World's Toughest Prisons
Netflix: Inside the World’s Toughest Prisons Host: WHAT IS YOUR STORY?
Netflix: Inside the World’s Toughest Prisons Host: WHAT IS YOUR STORY?

Check Raphael Rowe's availability

To enquire about booking Raphael Rowe, email info@speakersassociates.com or complete this form.

Check Availability


Your event

Your budget

Other speakers and topics


Would you like to receive our free monthly speaker bulletin?