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Attorney General to step into Deputy Bailiff role

Attorney General to step into Deputy Bailiff role

Tuesday 18 June 2019

Attorney General to step into Deputy Bailiff role


Jersey's Attorney General is to become the island's next Deputy Bailiff, it has been announced.

Robert MacRae QC has been appointed to replace Tim Le Cocq QC, who is himself poised to become the new Bailiff.

The appointment was approved by the Queen, on the recommendation of the Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice.

The post of Deputy Bailiff was advertised and the vacancy was drawn to the attention of all practising Jersey lawyers, any of whom could apply. There were four applicants, with two being shortlisted.

The selection process started with a consultation with a number of bodies and individuals from the justice system, including the Jurat, the Bâtonnier, the President of the Jersey Law Society, senior States Members, the Chief Minister, the Bailiff, the Solicitor General and the two local Commissioners currently serving as judges of the Royal Court.

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Pictured: Mr MacRae was appointed Attorney General, the Chief Prosecutor for the Island, in May 2015.

The other shortlisted candidate withdrew for personal reasons following this first step. However, Mr MacRae still underwent psychometric testing with a Professor of occupational psychology - a new stage to the process - and completed two desktop exercises, one of which was under time pressure.

He then went through a "thorough and rigorous interview" before the Selection Panel - which included the current Deputy Bailiff Tim Le Cocq, Mr James McNeill QC senior judge of the Court of Appeal, the then Lieutenant Bailiff Jurat Paul Nicolle, former Chief Minister Mr Terry Le Sueur OBE and Dame Janet Paraskeva of the Jersey Appointments Commission.

Commenting on his appointment, Mr MacRae said: "It is an honour to have the opportunity to serve the Island as Deputy Bailiff. Jersey has been well served over a long period by a strong, independent judiciary and I will endeavour to uphold the high standards set by my predecessors.

"Jersey’s criminal justice system is soon to undergo significant changes as a consequence of reforms to criminal procedure enacted by the States last year, and I look forward to contributing to the implementation of these changes."

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Pictured: The current Deputy Bailiff, Tim Le Cocq, will become the Bailiff in October.

Mr MacRae will take his post in October when the current Deputy Bailiff, Tim Le Cocq, becomes the new Bailiff.

65-year-old Sir William Bailhache, who has been in the role since 2015, announced in October last year he would be stepping down from his role as Bailiff of Jersey.

Mr MacRae's career at a glance...

  • 1990: Called to the English Bar (Middle Temple)
  • October 1991 - January 2001: Practised as a barrister on the Western Circuit
  • 2002: Passed the Jersey Bar exams
  • 2005: Joined Carey Olsen as a partner in, specialising in trust litigation
  • 2008: Appointed as Crown Advocate
  • 2015: Appointed as Attorney General

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