Lord Carloway QC has been appointed by the Queen to be the new Lord Justice Clerk. He replaces Lord Gill who was recently appointed as the new Lord President.
Lord Carloway was nominated by the First Minister taking account of recommendations made by an independent selection panel.
Lord Carloway was appointed a Judge in February 2000 and was appointed to the Second Division of the Inner House in August 2008. He was admitted to the Faculty of Advocates in 1977 and was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1990.
As well as being a highly respected author on matters of civil procedure, he also carried out the inquiry for the Scottish government into the aftermath of the “Cadder” judgement. His report into criminal law and practice was published in November 2011 and, amongst many recommendations, suggested the abolition of the requirement for corroboration in criminal cases in Scotland, a proposal which was surprising, especially in light of his Lordship’s previous comments about it being a cornerstone of the Scottish criminal justice system.
The Lord Justice Clerk is the second most senior judge in Scotland and as such has a prominent role in the Criminal Appeals system.
The salary of the Lord Justice Clerk is £206,857 per annum.
The selection panel was chaired by Sir Muir Russell (Chair of the Judicial Appointments Board for Scotland) and also comprised Lord Gill (the Lord President), the Lady Dorrian (senator of the Court of Session) and Elspeth Macarthur (a lay member of the Judicial Appointments Board for Scotland).
The official notice on the Scottish government website, and the announcements reported elsewhere fail to mention his Lordship’s recent role on the Scottish Football Association Judicial Panel and Appellate Tribunal, from which he stepped down following the overturning of his Tribunal’s decision regarding Rangers after a Judicial Review before Lord Glennie.
Perhaps Lord Carloway was confident that his application to be Lord Justice Clerk was going to be successful or perhaps he felt that it was an added distraction when he was focussing on his application.
In any event, notwithstanding the concerns of many lawyers about the terms of his Criminal Law Review, he is one of the best lawyers of his generation, and will surely continue his fine judicial service for many years in the post of Lord Justice Clerk.
In addition, as a sprightly 58 year old, he is now in pole position to succeed Lord Gill, aged 70, when he retires as Lord President, which can, at the latest, be on his 75th birthday.
Alternatively, when Lord Hope of Craighead, Deputy President of the UK Supreme Court, retires, as he will do soon, being aged 74, Lord Carloway would have the opportunity of seeking to replace him as one of the Scottish judges on the Supreme Court.
However, better perhaps to let him get his feet under the Bench as Lord Justice Clerk before dispatching him elsewhere!
Posted by Paul McConville