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Chief Coroner

The Lord Chief Justice, after consultation with the Lord Chancellor, has extended the term of office of His Honour Judge Peter Thornton QC as Chief Coroner of England and Wales.

HHJ Peter Thornton was appointed as the first Chief Coroner in September 2012 for a term of three years. The Lord Chief Justice has re-appointed HHJ Peter Thornton QC as Chief Coroner until 1 October 2016.

Notes to editors

1. The extension of the term of office has been made under the provisions of the Coroners and Justice Act 2009.

2. HHJ Peter Thornton QC is a Senior Circuit Judge at the Central Criminal Court (Old Bailey). Before being appointed to the circuit bench he was a practising Queen’s Counsel and part-time judge as a Deputy High Court Judge and Recorder of the Crown Court. In 2011, as Assistant Deputy Coroner for the City of London, he conducted the inquest into the death of Ian Tomlinson who died at the time of the G20 protests in 2009. As Chief Coroner, in addition to his many statutory functions and leadership duties, he has sat in the High Court on inquest cases, and in October 2014 he conducted the inquest in to the death of Dr Abbas Khan, who a jury found was unlawfully killed in Syria.

3. HHJ Peter Thornton QC took up his initial appointment on 17 September 2012.

4. The extension of his term of office will take effect immediately and will end on 1 October 2016.

5. A judge’s first name is used in his title where, as in this case, there has been more than one judge with the same surname.

6. Enquiries about the Chief Coroner should be directed to the Judicial Press Office on 020 7073 4852.

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