Mr Justice Peter Kelly nominated as president of the High Court

Mr Justice Peter Kelly
Mr Justice Peter Kelly

Mr Justice Peter Kelly was nominated to serve as the next president of the High Court at the final Cabinet meeting of the year, The Irish Times reports.

The surprise appointment will see the judge replace Mr Justice Nicholas Kearnsin the leading judicial role when he retires on Friday.

Mr Justice Kelly was called to the Bar in 1973 and spent two years working in the Department of Justice before practising as a barrister.

He became a Senior Counsel in 1986 and was appointed to the High Court in 1996.

He is a former presiding judge of the Commercial Court who was appointed to the new Court of Appeal last year.Mr Justice Kelly’s appointment has been welcomed by the Association of Judges of Ireland as well as the Law Society of Ireland and Bar Council of Ireland.

Ken Murphy, director general of the Law Society, said he was “a fearlessly independent judge with a ferocious work ethic, a first class legal mind and an utter commitment to the highest of standards from himself and others”.

The Cabinet meeting also saw the nomination of Cork barrister Miriam O’Regan SC and partnership law solicitor Michael Twomey to the High Court.

Solicitors Barry O’Callahan and Geoffrey Shannon were named as judges of the Circuit Court and District Court respectively.

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