Six new sheriffs added to Scotland’s burgeoning judicial elite. the AS local courts across Scotland close, allegedly to ‘save money’ and tens of millions of pounds are spent on maintaining the Parliament Square powerbase of Scotland’s ageing judges, the Scottish Government have this week swollen the ranks of Scotland’s judiciary even further with the appointment of six solicitors as Sheriffs on an annual salary of £130,875 plus the usual range of perks and multi million pound judicial pensions.
Those appointed in the latest round of additions to the judiciary are Mrs Aisha Yaqoob Anwar, Solicitor as a sheriff of Glasgow and Strathkelvin; Ms Lorna Allison Drummond, QC, as a sheriff of Tayside, Central and Fife; Ms Alison Nancy Stirling, Advocate and Mr Gordon Fleetwood, Solicitor as sheriffs of Grampian, Highland and Islands; Ian Macdonald Fleming, Solicitor Advocate as a sheriff of North Strathclyde; and Mr Brian Anthony Mohan, Solicitor as sheriff of South Strathclyde, Dumfries and Galloway. First Minister Alex Salmond nominated those recommended for appointment on the basis of a report by the independent Judicial Appointments Board for Scotland.
Aisha Anwar graduated with an LLB Hons from the University Edinburgh in 1996 and a Bachelor of Civil Law (Oxford 1998). She joined Maclay Murray and Spens in 1998 as a trainee, was admitted as a solicitor in 2000 and became an associate in 2003. From 2009 to 2012 she became a partner and then head of litigation at DLA Piper. She was appointed as a part-time sheriff in 2011. She has authored numerous publications, lectured and tutored. She recently co-authored the Civil Bench Book for Sheriffs on behalf of the Judicial Institute.
Brian Mohan graduated with an LLB Hons from the University of Glasgow in 1981. He was admitted as a solicitor in 1988. In 1992 he became a partner in Cartys Solicitors, concentrating on employment tribunal and sheriff court work in Hamilton and Airdrie. In 2009 he completed an LLM in Human Rights. Mr Mohan served as a Children’s Panel safeguarder in North Lanarkshire. He was a tutor in Glasgow University’s courses in Public Law (1989-2003) and Diploma in Legal Practice (2010-2014).
Alison Stirling graduated with an LLB from the University of Edinburgh in 1992. She was admitted as a Solicitor in 1994. In 1995 she became Legal Assistant to the Lord President and was admitted to the Faculty of Advocates in 1997. She has been Deputy Editor of Session Cases since 2001. She was appointed a part-time sheriff in 2011 and in 2014 was appointed a Legal Assessor to the Nursing and Midwifery Council.
Ian Fleming graduated with a LLB Hons from the University of Strathclyde in 1983. He was admitted as a solicitor in 1985. He was a trainee solicitor, assistant and partner with Paton and Co before becoming a partner with Fleming and Reid in 1990. He became a solicitor advocate in 2001. He was appointed as a part-time sheriff in 2005, a Convenor of Mental Health Tribunals in 2010 and a member of the Judicial Panel of the Scottish Football Association in 2011.
Lorna Drummond graduated with an LLB Hons from the University of Glasgow in 1985 followed by a Masters in Philosophy from the University of Cambridge. She was admitted as a solicitor in 1993 and employed as Assistant Scottish Parliamentary Counsel and Assistant Legal Secretary to the Scottish Law Officers before being called to the Bar in 1998. She was appointed Standing Junior to the Advocate General and to the Scottish Ministers. She was appointed a part time sheriff in 2009 and took silk in 2011.
Gordon Fleetwood graduated with an LLB Hons from the University of Edinburgh in 1973. He was admitted as a Solicitor in 1975 and became a Solicitor Advocate in 1994. Solicitor, More and Co, 1977-1982; then in Inverness with Sutherland and Co, 1982-1986 and Fleetwood and Robb, 1986-2004. He was principal in own practice, 2004-2008. He has been a part-time sheriff since 2003 and a legal member of the Parole Board since 2010.
The Judicial Appointments Board for Scotland was established by Ministers in 2002 and it became an independent advisory non-departmental public body on 1st June 2009. The board has statutory responsibilities under the Judiciary and Courts (Scotland) Act 2008. The board’s role is to recommend for appointment to the office of judge, sheriff principal, sheriff and part-time sheriff. The First Minister retains the statutory responsibility for making nominations to Her Majesty the Queen. The First Minister is required by statute to consult the Lord President of the Court of Session before making his nomination to Her Majesty.