The Director of Public Prosecutions for Northern Ireland Sir Alasdair Fraser has retired.
He has held the position for 21 years and joined the then newly established Department of the DPP in 1973, becoming deputy director in 1988 and director in 1989.
Justice Minister David Ford said he was instrumental in shaping the development of the prosecution service in Northern Ireland.
"Sir Alasdair's dedication to criminal justice is beyond question. He has never lost sight of the fact that the prosecution service sits at the heart of the criminal justice system and that it is essential that it responds to the concerns of society, whilst always being independent, fair and effective," he said.
"He has worked tirelessly to establish a service which is well equipped to meet the challenges of the future in which the traditional values of impartially and objectivity are combined with efficiency, a willingness to explain reasons for decisions and a firm commitment to collaborative working."