New Sentencing Council chairman appointed

Today, Lord Justice Treacy has been announced as the new chairman of the Sentencing Council. A member of the Council since it was established in 2010, his move to this role follows the announcement of previous chairman Lord Justice Leveson’s new role as President of the Queen’s Bench Division of the High Court.

His appointment has been made by the Lord Chief Justice with the agreement of the Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice, Chris Grayling, and is for an initial period of three years.

The Lord Chief Justice, Lord Thomas of Cwmgiedd said: “Lord Justice Treacy has been an enthusiastic and committed member of the Sentencing Council since it was set up in 2010. With his experience, he is ideally placed to build on its achievements so far and take forward its challenging workload.”

Chris Grayling added: “I am delighted to agree to this appointment. Lord Justice Treacy has already proved to be a valuable member of the Council and I am confident that as chair he will enable the Council to maintain its high standard of work.”

Lord Justice Treacy said: “The Council has a demanding and wide-ranging work programme which I look forward to leading. I am determined to build on the very solid foundation and achievements that have been achieved under the leadership of Lord Justice Leveson in the first three and a half years of the Council’s existence.

“My aim is to ensure that sentencing guidelines not only continue to provide a consistent and proportionate approach for judges and magistrates, but are also clear and accessible to the public so that they can see how sentencing works and have greater confidence in the process.”

Colman Treacy was called to the Bar by Middle Temple in 1971, was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1990, a Recorder in 1991 and to the High Court Bench in 2002. He was Presiding Judge on the Midland Circuit from 2006 to 2009. As a High Court Judge he has sat in the Court of Appeal Criminal Division, the Divisional Court, the Queen’s Bench Division, and the Administrative Court and is a Visitor to the Inns of Court. In July 2012 he was appointed as a Lord Justice of Appeal.

Some notable cases he has presided over include the trial in 2011 of Gary Dobson and David Norris for the murder of Stephen Lawrence, the 2006 trial of Colin Gunn the head of an criminal gang in Nottingham and the 2005 trial, under the principle of universal jurisdiction, of Afghan warlord Faryadi Sarwar Zardad.

In 2010, he was the presiding judge in the case of the £1.7m robbery of the Menzies World Cargo warehouse at Heathrow Airport in 2004, which was the first significant criminal trial to be heard in England without a jury for more than 400 years.

Further information on other members of the Council is available.