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West Devon and Torridge MP Geoffrey Cox mooted for top legal position

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: November 28, 2012

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Geoffrey Cox MP is being suggested as the possible new Attorney General

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Ministers have mooted Westcountry MP Geoffrey Cox as a replacement for under-fire Attorney General Dominic Grieve.

Speculation in Westminster is rife that the Conservative Member for West Devon and Torridge, a barrister, is being lined up as the Government's new chief legal adviser.

Mr Grieve last week faced criticism from within his own party over the jailing of SAS Sergeant Danny Nightingale.

He said it was "inappropriate" for him to intervene after Defence Secretary Philip Hammond wrote to him asking to review whether proper consideration was given to the question of whether a prosecution was in the public interest before the case was brought to court martial. Even David Cameron expressed "sympathy".

Mr Grieve also warned ministers not to express a view on giving prisoners the vote, despite Mr Cameron saying the idea makes him feel physically sick.

Mr Cox is one of London's best-paid barristers, and has earned more than £400,000 over 12 months.

At least one Cabinet minister is thought to be pushing for Mr Cox's appointment as he has long been a defender of personal liberty, and was central to the parliamentary campaign against identity cards.

In his 2005 maiden speech, he spoke of how, as a barrister, he had often seen the state point its "finger of accusation at an individual in the dock" and how it was frequently wrong.

MPs, he said, "should guard jealously their constituents' freedom and autonomy".

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  • accom  |  November 28 2012, 9:27AM

    I didn't vote for him at either of the general elections where he won here in Torridge, but I would support him for his strong stance on civil liberties and miscarriages of justice.

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