Alliance Justice Minister Naomi Long has expressed her sympathy to the family of Lord Brian Kerr, who has died at the age of 72.
She said: “I was saddened and shocked to learn today of Brian’s sudden death, particularly as he had only recently retired.
“As many will know, Lord Brian Kerr was a former Lord Chief Justice of Northern Ireland serving in that role between 2004 and 2009, when he was then appointed as the first Northern Ireland Justice to the new UK Supreme Court.
“His appointment to the Supreme Court did not however dim his interest in the Northern Ireland justice system and he would often speak at legal events, including most recently just last month.
“Both as a Supreme Court judge and as Lord Chief Justice in Northern Ireland, Brian made his mark as a distinguished lawyer. I fully recognise, as do many right across the justice system, his contribution to the administration of justice and in fulfilling his judicial oath to do right to all manner of people without fear or favour, affection or ill will.
“As well as occupying such a central role in our justice system, Lord Kerr was also of course a man with friends and family. My thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Gillian, his sons and the wider family circle as they come to terms with their loss.”