Trained lawyer ‘will add to faith in island courts’

John MacRitchie shakes hands with Governor Capes
John MacRitchie (right) shakes hands with Governor Capes after taking his oath of office

St Helena’s first professional magistrate has said his arrival could give people “even further” confidence in the island’s justice system.

John MacRitchie has been appointed to the new role of chief magistrate for five years. He will hear court cases, train lay magistrates and court officers, and also servce as coroner, land registrar and, later this year, media standards commissioner.

He said: “It is clear to me already that I am to join an excellent team of existing magistrates. To have an independent and legally qualified chief magistrate on the island will, I hope, add even further to the public confidence that exists in our legal system at present.”

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