JCIO 23/24

Date: 16 May 2024





Mr Andrew Sturgess JP


A spokesperson for the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office said:

Mr Justice Keehan, on behalf of the Lady Chief Justice and with the Lord Chancellor’s agreement, has issued Mr Andrew Sturgess JP with a reprimand for failing to complete the minimum annual sittings required of a magistrate and for failing to engage with his bench chair to discuss the matter.

On appointment, magistrates sign a declaration and undertaking, which includes a commitment to sit for at least 13 days (or 26 half days) a year.

An investigation was carried out under the Judicial Conduct (Magistrates) Rules 2023 after the bench chair raised concerns that Mr Sturgess had not sat since February 2023 and had failed to attend a training course in October 2023. A nominated committee member of the North West Region Conduct Advisory Committee found that Mr Sturgess had previously given assurances to his bench chair that he would make up his sittings after concerns were raised with him on two previous occasions.

In representations, Mr Sturgess stated that he had struggled to fulfil his sittings due to work commitments and for personal reasons but wished to remain a magistrate.

In recommending a reprimand, the nominated committee member took into consideration that Mr Sturgess had immediately booked himself on training and booked in sittings as soon as he was contacted by the advisory committee.

Mr Justice Keehan and the Lord Chancellor agreed with the nominated committee member that Mr Sturgess’ actions amounted to misconduct and issued him with a reprimand.




Notes for Editors

Media queries in relation to the JCIO should be made in the first instance to the Judicial Press Office - telephone 020 7073 4852 or via email - press.enquiries@judiciary.gsi.gov.uk

Sanctions for misconduct by judicial office-holders are set out in the Constitutional Reform Act 2005. They are, in order of severity: formal advice, formal warning, reprimand and removal from office.

For more information about the Office, including details on how to make a complaint against a judicial office holder, you can visit the JCIO website at: Judicial Conduct Investigations website