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Advocate General takes oaths of office


Dec 4, 2020

Lord Stewart was today sworn in as the Advocate General for Scotland. The ceremonies took place in Parliament House before the Lord President, Lord Carloway, with the Lord Justice Clerk, Lady Dorrian, and Lord Menzies.


The Advocate General took the oaths of office before taking his official seat within the Court.  

The Lord President, Lord Carloway, said: “Since March, several new senators have been installed in this now almost deserted courtroom. Keith Douglas Stewart QC is, however, the first Law Officer to take the oath in this strange, but as it now appears finite, era of physical distancing. As a senior member of the Faculty of Advocates and the criminal bar, we can be sure that, were it not for the pandemic, the Court would have been filled with Lord Stewart’s family, friends and colleagues.

“Our new Advocate General’s full title is Baron Stewart of Dirleton QC. Dirleton is where Lord Stewart attended primary school, before going to secondary in Edinburgh and then on to Oxford to study English. He returned to Scotland to undertake his legal education at the universities of Edinburgh and Strathclyde, before calling to the bar in 1993. There, he practised primarily in criminal law, at first as a defence advocate and then prosecuting serious crime as advocate and senior advocate depute. Lord Stewart has also advised on defamation and intellectual property cases, and lectured for professional colleagues on topics including criminal law, personal injury damages and contract law. He took silk in 2011

“Lord Stewart’s transition from the law to government reminds us that these two spheres of public life are not mutually exclusive. As the UK Government continues with the complex process of leaving the European Union and, in conjunction with Scottish Ministers, guides the recovery from the worst public health crisis in living memory, it is vital that it has access to authoritative legal advice on Scots law. That is something, with the benefit of a long career as a member of the Faculty of Advocates, that Lord Stewart is well-equipped to provide. You have the Court’s best wishes as you embark on this new phase of your career.”

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