News In Focus
Former Solicitor General to be floating sheriff
John Beckett QC has been appointed as an all-Scotland floating sheriff based in Glasgow.
First Minister Alex Salmond nominated Mr Beckett for appointment on the basis of a report by the independent Judicial Appointments Board.
Mr Beckett's commission will mean he can serve where needed throughout Scotland's sheriff courts, but in practice he is expected to sit mostly in the Sheriffdom of Glasgow and Strathkelvin.
Mr Beckett, 45, is a graduate of Edinburgh University. Between 1986 and 1992 he practised as a solicitor in Edinburgh. He was admitted to the Faculty of Advocates in 1993, taking silk in 2005. He was junior defence counsel in the Lockerbie trial and appeal and from 2003-2006 he served as an advocate depute. He was Solicitor General for Scotland from 2006 until 2007.
His appointment fills the vacancy that arose when Sheriff Alan Mackenzie, a floating sheriff based in Glasgow, became a resident sheriff there following the retirement of Sheriff Brian Kearney.