Belfast Telegraph

Justice chief will take over police role

By Michael McHugh

An inspector of the criminal justice system in Northern Ireland will become the province's next police ombudsman.

Dr Michael Maguire was handed the £128,000-a-year contract to consider complaints against the police by the Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister (OFMDFM).

Former ombudsman Al Hutchinson stepped down from the role in January after criticism of the performance of his office.

Dr Maguire conducted an independent inspection of the office following complaints from its former chief executive that his independence had been limited.

His report was one of a number of factors behind the early departure of Mr Hutchinson.

About 30 people applied for the post, which has covered controversial Troubles killings, historic inquests and investigations as well as more recent police actions which caused death or injury.

Dr Maguire (52) is from the Belfast area. He is the chief inspector of Criminal Justice Inspection Northern Ireland, after joining the organisation in 2008.

Prior to taking up his post with CJI, Dr Maguire was a partner in the international consulting firm PA Consulting Group for 10 years.

He has worked across a wide range of areas including criminal justice, health, education, equality, economic and social development.

His inquiries on criminal justice have also covered the prison service and other agencies.

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