Northern Ireland news

Attorney General interim role to be taken on by Executive legal adviser Brenda King

Brenda King speaking at Victoria University of Wellington in 2016

THE Executive's First Legal Counsel Brenda King will take on the responsibilities of the Attorney General until a replacement is found for John Larkin QC when he leaves the post at the end of the month.

First Minister Arlene Foster told the assembly of the decision ahead of an "open competition" for the role.

"I would like to thank Ms King for agreeing to take on this important role and look forward to working with her in this capacity over the coming months," she said

Deputy First Minister Michelle O'Neill said it is "encouraging to see more women in senior positions in public life".

"I would like to express my appreciation to Ms King for taking on the discharging of the functions of the Attorney General on an interim basis.

"This will ensure that the duties of the post can continue to be properly carried out during the period of time required to appoint a successor to the role. I wish her well in the role."

The 56-year-old began her career in private practice, but moved into the civil service, becoming the Executive's chief legislative adviser since 2012, having spent time in the diplomatic service with a posting to Gibraltar.

She studied at Queen's University of Belfast, the University of South Carolina and Cambridge University.

As First Legal Counsel her main role is helping ministers and officials translate policy into legislation, drafting Executive bills for introduction into the assembly.

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