Mussenden named new DPP
Former Attorney-General Larry Mussenden has been appointed Bermuda’s new Director of Public Prosecutions, Governor George Fergusson announced yesterday.
Mr Mussenden, who was also the Government Senate Leader under the former Progressive Labour Party administration, will succeed Rory Field.
“I am honoured to be appointed the Director of Public Prosecutions,” Mr Mussenden told The Royal Gazette. “I look forward to serving the people of Bermuda in this capacity and look forward to working with the Crown Counsel and staff of the Department in presenting cases in Court.
“I am keen to engage with various agencies, including schools and youth groups, in how we can work to reduce serious crime in Bermuda and how we can help our young people to make good choices and be productive citizens,” he said.
“I have a background in information technology, so I am keen to bring some modern case management tools to the department to complement what may exist already, especially in challenging budget times.”
He added that Bermuda is “very fortunate to have a criminal justice system - comprised of the court, police, prosecution, defence and the public as jurors and concerned citizens - that can try a variety of cases in relative short time as compared to many other countries”.
“This is extremely important to complainants, defendants and the general public – all who have to have utmost confidence in the system. I am forever committed to those principles.”
The senior director of law firm Mussenden Subair, who has also served as an acting magistrate in criminal matters, has experience in criminal and civil litigation matters, as well as insolvency, public law and commercial litigation.
“Having soon to leave the defence bar, I have always cherished my function as a defence counsel giving my best efforts for my clients and working alongside other defence counsel,” Mr Mussenden said.
“It is truly an honorable part of how our justice system works and it will always have my respect.”
Mr Fergusson announced in December that Government House would seek a new DPP after Mr Field, who first took up the post in 2007 and whose reappointment in 2010 and 2013 sparked controversy, tendered his resignation to take other opportunities.
In appointing Mr Mussenden, Mr Fergusson accepted the recommendation of the Judicial and Legal Services Committee, a statement from Government House said yesterday.
And Mr Fergusson said: “I am very pleased to make this appointment. Mr Mussenden will bring to this important role long experience of the law, from the perspective of a defence counsel as well as a prosecutor and in private practice as well as in government service.
“I wish him well in this often challenging role and have every confidence that he will make an excellent DPP.”
Mr Mussenden was admitted as a barrister in England and Wales in 1995 and in Bermuda a year later, having earned a law degree at the University of Kent at Canterbury and studying at the Inns of Court School of Law in London. He served as a Crown counsel in the Attorney-General’s chambers in 1996, and then as a prosecutor in the office of the Department of Public Prosecutions.
He was appointed the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice of Bermuda and Government Senate Leader in January 2004, having being appointed a senator in 2003, and served as such until October 2006. As Attorney-General, he set up the Justice System Review Committee and oversaw the implementation of its recommendations.
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