Press Releases in Hong Kong

British judge to step down from HK’s top court

Brenda Hale. (PHOTO/SUPREME COURT OF THE UK)

HONG KONG – The Hong Kong judiciary said on Friday that British judge Brenda Hale will step down from the city's Court of Final Appeal on July 29 when her three-year term expires, due to personal reasons.

Currently, there are 13 judges from other common law jurisdictions, comprising nine from the United Kingdom, three from Australia and one from Canada

Hale, a former president of Britain's Supreme Court, was appointed to serve as a non-permanent judge by Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor in March 2018.

She, along with former Canadian Chief Justice Beverly McLachlin, was the first woman to serve on the city's top court.

In a statement issued Friday, the judiciary said the presence of non-permanent judges from other common law jurisdictions allows Hong Kong to maintain links with other common law jurisdictions.

"If there are suitable candidates, the judiciary will continue to deal with the appointment recommendations in accordance with the relevant provisions and established mechanism under the Basic Law and the Judicial Officers Recommendation Commission Ordinance," the statement reads.

The Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal Ordinance stipulates that there shall be a list of non-permanent Hong Kong judges and a list of judges from other common law jurisdictions.

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The total number of persons holding office as non-permanent judges shall not at any time exceed 30.

Currently, there are 13 judges from other common law jurisdictions, comprising nine from the United Kingdom, three from Australia and one from Canada.

With Reuters inputs