Chief Inspector of Criminal Justice

Date published: 20 November 2018

The Department of Justice has extended the appointment of Brendan McGuigan as Chief Inspector of Criminal Justice for Northern Ireland to 29 November 2019. Mr McGuigan has held the position since 2012.

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Since September 2017, Mr McGuigan has undertaken the additional responsibility of oversight of the work of the Prisoner Ombudsman’s office and will continue to fulfil this function alongside his Chief Inspector role until a successor is appointed.

The extension will come into effect on 30 November 2018 and has been made in accordance with the Commissioner for Public Appointments in Northern Ireland.

Peter May, the Permanent Secretary for the Department of Justice, said: “Both the Chief Inspector and the Prisoner Ombudsman posts play a vital role in seeking to secure improvement of, and confidence in, the criminal justice system.

“Brendan’s wealth of knowledge and expertise will provide important continuity during this period of political uncertainty.”

Notes to editors: 

1. The extension of appointment is made in accordance with the CPA NI Code of Practice.  The Chief Inspector post is full-time with a salary of £106,040.

2. Criminal Justice Inspection Northern Ireland (CJINI) is an independent public body established under the Justice (Northern Ireland) Act 2002.  The role of the Criminal Justice Inspection Northern Ireland is to inspect all aspects of the criminal justice system in Northern Ireland apart from the judiciary.  It also inspects a number of other agencies and organisations that link into the criminal justice system.

3. The Prisoner Ombudsman is appointed by the Minister of Justice for Northern Ireland. The process for placing the Ombudsman’s Office on a statutory footing has been progressed through the Justice Act (NI) 2016. Regulations formally establishing the new Office of the Prison Ombudsman for Northern Ireland will go before the Assembly in due course.

4. For further information on both organisations visit the  Criminal Justice Inspection Northern Ireland website and

Northern Ireland Prisoner Ombudsman website
5. For all media queries, please contact the DOJ Press Office on 028 9052 6444. Out of office hours please contact the Duty Press Officer on 028 90 378110.

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