Scotland’s new advocate General’s hair-raising past

Stewart has experience of defending some scary characters:

A double killer who beheaded and dismembered his victim has had his minimum jail term slashed by four years. David Collins was jailed for life and ordered to serve at least 26 years after murdering Kevin Bishop in a machete attack and severing his limbs and head in a bid to conceal the crime. But lawyers acting for Collins, 47, appealed against the minimum period – known as a punishment part – that he has to spend in jail before he can apply for parole. Judges at the Court of Criminal Appeal in Edinburgh yesterday ruled his punishment part should be fixed at 22 years. Keith Stewart QC, for Collins, told appeal judges he recognised “the extreme gravity” of the crimes he had committed. He said: “He has, moreover, a significant criminal history, including a conviction for culpable homicide.” He said it was acknowledged that the trial judge was bound to select a significant punishment part, but argued that in the light of similar cases the sentence was excessive.

Sometimes, he just gives up on them:

Advocate Depute Bernard Ablett told a jury that John Bermingham (51), tried to take the two 10-year-old schoolgirls from Glenburn Road, Falkirk, in May 2017. Mr Ablett addressed the jury after defence advocate Keith Stewart QC told judge Lord Beckett that he didn’t intend to lead any evidence on behalf of his client.

Sounds like the just the experience needed to work with the Scottish Conservatives.

16 thoughts on “Scotland’s new advocate General’s hair-raising past

  1. While I agree that anyone who takes on the job is probably a moral deficient, you have no more right to criticise a lawyer than has Ugly PrattlevtgecHome Secretary.
    An independent Scotland will be under the rule of law and we even need lawyers who will try and get ever the worst off or a reduced Punishment


  2. The Tories want to lock ’em up, and throw away the key.
    Keith Stewart wants to get them out early.

    I suppose you can justify ANYTHING if you agree to be a Law Officer to a regime hell bent on breaching the law.

    No one can help their appearance, but he looks like you would imagine, one of his crazed clients would look.
    And it aint a good look !

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I was about to say he needs a better haircut. Can’t see it but suit trousers might be half way up the leg. Pop star leanings or just been with a lot of dodgy characters?

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Maybe Ruthie had him parachuted in.

      It worked for her and Whistling Dougie.

      Well…,,,when I say “worked”…………………………….?


  3. If the UK Gov’s law-breaking policies were too contentious for Wolffe, a committed Unionist) to remain in post (they clearly contravene the Scottish Bar’s internal rules), how does Stewart reconcile the role with his membership of the system of governance of Scots Law?


    1. James Wolffe is the Lord Advocate in Scotland and Keith Stewart is the Advocate General for Scotland. The Advocate General is Westminster’s man. He advises Boris Johnston on legal matters as Scots law is independent “for all time coming” (Treaty of Union) from English law.

      The previous incumbent was Lord Keen of Elie. He resigned because he couldn’t reconcile his duty to uphold the law with his Conservative law breaking masters. It appears that Keith Stewart can.


  4. No one wants pictures of themselves floating around that show themselves in a bad light, we all have a little vanity so this man must feel this is a good foty
    I’m not convinced he made the right decision on that, let’s hope his legal choices are better


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