Barristers anger at Justice Sec’s selfie with roller-skating Xmas pud

Dominic Raab’s choice to ship pre-recorded bar convention message (fairly than attending in-person) has apparently not gone down effectively with attorneys

Dominic Raab by way of Twitter

The Justice Secretary has angered barristers after he opted to not ship a speech in-person at the annual bar convention at the weekend, selecting as a substitute to open a Christmas pageant in his constituency and take a selfie with a large roller-skating Christmas pudding and bauble.

Dominic Raab MP, who grew to become Lord Chancellor and Justice Secretary two months in the past, despatched a brief pre-recorded video message to delegates at Saturday’s convention in London as a substitute.

He later tweeted a selfie in his constituency of Esher and Walton subsequent to 2 ladies on curler skates — one dressed as a Christmas pudding and the opposite as a bauble.

“Great to open the Christmas festival in Walton today — wonderful to see the community out enjoying the festive fun, including the roller-skating Christmas pudding!” he wrote.

Raab’s photo-op didn’t go down too effectively with barristers on Twitter, it appears. Tomas McGarvey of two Bedford Row described Raab’s no-show as a “dereliction of duty”.

McGarvey tweeted: “The Lord Chancellor, responsible for the efficient functioning and independence of the courts, chose not to address the Bar Council’s conference in-person because he was *check notes* in Walton at a Christmas festival. A dereliction of duty?”

Raab’s reverse quantity, the Shadow Lord Chancellor and Justice Secretary David Lammy MP, said: “This morning I chose to spend my time with our country’s barristers at their first physical conference in two years. Dominic Raab was invited but instead [chose] to spend it with a [woman] dressed as a Christmas pudding.”

Nor did his video message appear to go down a deal with as Kirsty Brimelow QC of Doughty Road Chambers said it was “met with absolute silence in the room” and “not even a polite handclap”. She added that “it is well known that he [Raab] continues not to meet leadership of the Criminal Bar Association or the Bar Council”.

Bar Council chair Derek Sweeting QC reportedly told the conference that he has not met Raab since he was appointed Justice Sec in September. “I very much hope, some two months after he was sworn in, his diary commitments will allow us to meet,” he stated.

The Ministry of Justice stated that Raab “was unable to make the event but has engaged with the sector and will continue to do so”.

Raab, a former Linklaters lawyer, was demoted as Overseas Secretary and took over as Justice Secretary from barrister Robert Buckland MP in September. He got here below hearth over his dealing with of the withdrawal from Afghanistan.

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