Top mining lawyer David Jackson QC has been appointed as a judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland in response to its increased workload.
In July, guaranteed start dates for criminal trials were not available until 2013. A two-week trial for civil proceedings could not be listed before 2013, revealed Attorney-General and Justice Minister Jarrod Bleijie (pictured).
The length of time it takes to deal with lodgements under the Dangerous Prisoners (Sexual Offenders) Act 2003 increased 117 per cent between 2008-09 and 2010-11.
The funding for an extra judge was announced in the 2012-13 State Budget.
Bleijie said the Government had listened to the chief justice, the Honourable Paul de Jersey AC, when he raised concerns about court resources.
“An extra justice working every day of the year will streamline the trial process and reduce these waiting times,” he said.
Premier Campbell Newman said the heavy backlog of cases “isn't good enough".
"We have said we will be tough on crime and have increased the minimum sentences for murder, repeat child sex offenders and serious assaults on police … these trials should be getting underway as soon as possible,” he said in a statement.
Jackson has practised for many years in commercial law and has expertise in resource and mining law.
He was called to the Queensland Bar in 1977 and appointed a QC in 1990.
He is a member of the Council of the Bar Association of Queensland and the Supreme Court Library Committee.
“[Jackson] is a leader of the commercial and appellate Bar in Brisbane and a highly-respected member of the legal profession,” said Bleijie, adding that the appointment would bring the total of judges on the Trial Division of the Supreme Court to 20.
Queensland Law Society president Dr John de Groot congratulated Jackson and wished him well in the conduct of his important role.
Jackson will be sworn in on 10 October at the Queen Elizabeth II Courts of Law. His appointment was formally announced on 14 September.