Formal warning for Court of Appeal judge who was ‘rude and hostile’ towards barrister

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By Thomas Connelly on


‘Judicial bullying’

A senior judge has been issued with a formal warning after he was found to have behaved in a “rude and hostile manner” towards a barrister during a hearing.

The Court of Appeal’s Lord Justice Clive Lewis “intervened excessively” in the unnamed barrister’s submissions throughout the hearing, in a manner which became “increasingly harsh and rude” and to the extent that it constituted “judicial bullying”.

The experienced judge had accepted he had allowed his frustrations at the hearing to show and reflected that he should have handled matters differently, according to a finding published by the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office (JCIO). He apologised at the hearing.

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A spokesperson for the JCIO said the Lord Chief Justice and Lord Chancellor agreed to issue the judge with a formal warning, after “they took into consideration the mitigation offered… including his apology and commitment to learn from the experience and adjust his behaviour in future”.

No further details about the incident were provided.

Lord Justice Lewis called to the bar in 1987 and began practice in 1992 with a focus judicial review and public law matters. He was appointed to the High Court, Queen’s Bench Division (now King’s Bench Division) in 2013 and was appointed as a Lord Justice of Appeal in October 2020.

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