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Media Release: Extension of Appointment of High Court Judges, Reappointments of Senior Judges and International Judges to the Singapore International Commercial Court

MEDIA RELEASE

Extension of Appointment of High Court Judges, Reappointments of Senior Judges and International Judges to the Singapore International Commercial Court

The President of the Republic of Singapore, in accordance with Article 95 (2) of the Constitution, has extended the appointment of Justice Quentin Loh Sze-On for a further two-year term, while three High Court Judges, Justice Chan Seng Onn, Justice Lee Seiu Kin and Justice Choo Han Teck, will have their terms extended by another year.

2 At the same time, in accordance with Article 95 (4)(b) of the Constitution, the President of the Republic of Singapore has reappointed Justice Chao Hick Tin (赵锡燊), Justice Andrew Ang (翁安得烈) and Justice Lai Siu Chiu (赖秀珠) as Senior Judges of the Supreme Court. Justice Chao’s reappointment will be for a period of two years, while Justice Andrew Ang and Justice Lai Siu Chiu will be reappointed as Senior Judges for a period of one year. Their new terms will commence on 5 January 2021.

3 The President of the Republic of Singapore has also reappointed 16 International Judges (IJ) to the Singapore International Commercial Court (SICC) in accordance with Article 95(4) (C) of the constitution. Their new terms will commence on 5 January 2021.

4 The Honourable the Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon has also appointed Justice Quentin Loh as President of the SICC, with effect from 25 December 2020, alongside the extension of his appointment as High Court Judge.

Extension of Appointment of four High Court Judges

Judges

Effective date

Justice Quentin Loh Sze-On(罗赐安)

*concurrently appointed as President of SICC

25 Dec 2020

Justice Chan Seng Onn (陈成安)

4 Jan 2021

Justice Lee Seiu Kin (李兆坚)

30 Jan 2021

Justice Choo Han Teck (朱汉德)

21 Feb 2021

Justice Quentin Loh

5 Justice Loh was first appointed to the Supreme Court bench as a Judicial Commissioner (JC) on 1 September 2009 and elevated to a High Court Judge on 1 June 2010. Since his retirement on 25 December 2015, he had been reappointed as High Court Judge twice. Justice Loh specialises in all aspects of construction, commercial litigation and arbitration (domestic and international). He also hears public law matters. In addition, Justice Loh is the Judge in charge of the SICC and chairs the SICC Development Committee and the SICC Rules Committee. In August 2018, Justice Loh was appointed as Judge of the Supreme Court of Fiji on a part-time basis for three years to hear cases in an appellate capacity, excluding major criminal cases and cases involving constitutional issues.  Justice Loh’s current tenure ends on 24 December 2020.

Justice Chan Seng Onn

6 Justice Chan was appointed JC of the Supreme Court on 15 October 1997. He left Supreme Court in June 2001 to assume the appointment of Solicitor-General before returning to the Bench as a High Court Judge on 2 July 2007. As Judge, his areas of focus are in building and construction, shipbuilding, complex and technical cases, intellectual property and criminal matters. Justice Chan has been the President of the Industrial Arbitration Court since 15 October 2007. He is also amember of the Sentencing Council, the Costs Panel and the Council of Law Reporting. Justice Chan’s current tenure ends on 3 January 2021.

Justice Lee Seiu Kin

7 Justice Lee was appointed JC of the Supreme Court on 15 October 1997. He left in October 2002 to assume the appointment of 2nd Solicitor-General before returning to the Bench as a High Court Judge on 11 April 2006. As Judge, his areas of focus include construction and shipbuilding, intellectual property, employment and criminal matters. Justice Lee also chairs the OneJudiciary Steering Committee which oversees and drives the implementation of the Courts of the Future IT Roadmap initiatives. Justice Lee’s current tenure ends on 29 January 2021.

Justice Choo Han Teck

8 Justice Choo was appointed JC of the Supreme Court on 1 April 1995 and was elevated to a High Court Judge on 2 January 2003. His areas of focus are in revenue law, employment issues, tort claims and criminal matters. He has been the President of the Military Court of Appeal since November 2004 and a member of the SAL’s Publication Committee since 2006. Justice Choo’s current tenure ends on 20 February 2021.

Reappointment of Senior Judges

Justice Chao Hick Tin

9 Justice Chao Hick Tin began his career in the Public Service as a State Counsel in the Attorney-General’s Chambers in 1967 and rose to the position of Senior State Counsel in 1979. Justice Chao was appointed JC in 1987 and elevated to a High Court Judge in 1990. He subsequently became a Judge of Appeal in 1999. He was appointed Attorney-General in 2006 and returned to the Supreme Court as a Judge of Appeal and Vice-President of the Court of Appeal in 2008. Justice Chao retired as a Judge of Appeal on 28 September 2017 after more than 50 years of public service and was appointed a Senior Judge on 5 January 2018 for a period of three years.

Justice Andrew Ang

10 Justice Andrew Ang started his legal career as a lecturer at the National University of Singapore’s Law Faculty in 1972. He joined Lee & Lee two years later in 1974 and became a Partner in 1975. In May 2004, he was appointed to the Supreme Court Bench as a JC and was later elevated as a High Court Judge in May 2005. Justice Ang retired in February 2014 and returned to the Supreme Court as a Senior Judge in 2015.

Justice Lai Siu Chiu

11 Justice Lai Siu Chiu was appointed JC of the Supreme Court 1991, the first female to be so appointed. She subsequently became the first female Judge of the Supreme Court in 1994. Justice Lai was in private practice prior to joining the Supreme Court. She retired from the Bench in October 2013 and was appointed as a Senior Judge in 2015.

Completion of term

12 Meanwhile, Justice Tan Lee Meng (陈利明) will complete his term as Senior Judge on 4 January 2021. The Supreme Court is grateful to Justice Tan for his valuable contribution to the Judiciary as a Senior Judge and would like to wish him the very best.

Reappointment of International Judges to the SICC

13 The current term of the 16 IJs of the SICC will expire on 4 January 2021. 15 IJs will be reappointed for a period of three years from 5 January 2021, with the exception of Justice Carolyn Berger whose reappointment would conclude with the conclusion of the case - SIC/S 3/2018. This is provided for under Article 95(5) (a) of the Constitution.

14 The IJs who will be reappointed are as follows:

S/N

Name of IJ

1

Justice Carolyn Berger (USA)

Reappointed for a third term until the conclusion of the case“SIC/S 3/2018”

2

Justice Patricia Anne Bergin (Australia)

Reappointed for a third term

3

Justice Jeremy Lionel Cooke (UK)

Reappointed for a second term

4

Justice Henry Bernard Eder (UK)

Reappointed for a third term

5

Justice Robert Shenton French (Australia)

Reappointed for a second term

6

Justice Roger David Giles (Australia)

Reappointed for a third term

7

Justice Dominique Severano Francois Marie Thiebault Hascher (France)

Reappointed for a third term

8

Justice Douglas Samuel Jones (Australia)

Reappointed for a second term

9

Justice Jonathan Hugh Mance (UK)

Reappointed for a second term

10

JusticeBeverley Marian McLachlin PC (Canada)

Reappointed for a second term

11

Justice David Edmond Neuberger of Abbotsbury (UK)

Reappointed for a second term

12

Justice Vivian Arthur Ramsey (UK)

Reappointed for a third term

13

Justice Anselmo Trinidad Reyes (Hong Kong)

Reappointed for a third term

14

Justice Sir Bernard Rix (UK)

Reappointed for a third term

15

Justice Arjan Kumar Sikri (India)

Reappointed for a second term

16

Justice Simon Joe Thorley QC (UK)

Reappointed for a third term

15 Details of the 16 IJs who will be reappointed to the SICC can be found in Annex A.

16 With effect from 5 January 2021, following the above appointments, the Supreme Court will have a total of 25 Judges (including the Chief Justice and four Judges of Appeal), six Judicial Commissioners, three Senior Judges and 16 International Judges.

SUPREME COURT

17 DECEMBER 2020

 

 


Annex A

Justice Carolyn Berger

Justice Carolyn Berger was a Justice on the Delaware Supreme Court, the highest Court in the State of Delaware from 1994 to 2014. Before that, she served for 10 years on the Delaware Court of Chancery, the business trial court in Delaware that specialises in corporate and commercial disputes.

Before serving on the Delaware Courts, Justice Berger was a Deputy Attorney General in the Delaware Attorney General’s office and a corporate litigator in the firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher and Flom. She holds a Masters Degree in Elementary Education from Boston University School of Education and taught public school in Boston, Massachusetts, before attending law school.

Born in New York, she received a Juris Doctor degree from Boston University School of Law in 1976 and an honorary Doctor of Laws from Widener University School of Law in 1996.

Justice Patricia Bergin

Justice Bergin retired from the Supreme Court of New South Wales on 29 January 2017, having been appointed in March 1999.  Between 2003 and March 2009 she served as Commercial List Judge administering the work of the busiest Commercial Court in Australia. Justice Bergin was appointed Chief Judge in Equity in March 2009 and served in that role until her retirement.

Justice Jeremy Cooke

Sir Jeremy Cooke who graduated from Oxford University was called to the Bar in 1976 and appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1990. He was appointed High Court Judge, Queen’s Bench, Commercial Court in 2001 and retired in 2016 after 15 years on the Bench. He served as the Judge in charge of the Commercial Court for a time and is highly respected for his expertise in commercial law. He is also known for his expertise in energy, insurance & reinsurance, professional negligence, shipping & maritime law, international trade, banking and derivatives. Justice Cooke is currently an International Judge with the Dubai International Financial Centre.

Justice Henry Bernard Eder

Justice Eder was formerly a Judge of the High Court of England and Wales and was assigned to the Queen’s Bench Division and the Commercial Court from 2011 to 2015.  Prior to the appointment, he was a Barrister in Essex Court Chambers of London from 1975 to 2010 and was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1990.  From 1999 to 2003, he was a Visiting Professor at University College London.  He is widely recognised as an expert in the areas of commercial disputes, civil claims and international arbitration involving all aspects of commercial law including banking, shipping, sale of goods, commodities, oil/gas and insurance.  He is currently the Senior Editor of Scrutton on Charterparties and Bills of Lading.  He has rejoined Essex Court Chambers as an arbitrator/mediator.

Justice Robert Shenton French

Justice Robert French was a Judge of the Federal Court of Australia for about 22 years before being appointed the Chief Justice of Australia in 2008. After his retirement as Chief Justice in January 2017, he accepted the appointment of non-permanent Judge in the Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal. Justice French has a special interest in intellectual property, competition, commercial and public law.

 Justice Roger Giles

Justice Giles graduated from the University of Sydney with a BA in 1961 and LLB (Hons) in 1965, and from the Oxford University with a BCL (Hons) in 1968. After a time in articles and as a solicitor, he was admitted to the NSW Bar in 1971 and became Queen's Counsel in 1983. In 1988, he was appointed to the Supreme Court of NSW, becoming Chief Judge of the Commercial Division in 1994 and a Judge of the Court of Appeal in 1998. He retired from that Court in December 2011. Justice Giles principally practiced in equity and commercial law, but the Court of Appeal took him into most areas of civil and criminal law. He was also a Judge of the Dubai International Financial Centre Courts.

Justice Dominique T. Hascher

Justice Hascher was appointed to the Supreme Judicial Court in France as Judge in 2012. He received a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Paris in 1977 and a Master of Laws from Harvard University in 1983 after earning a Fulbright scholarship. He joined the French Judiciary in 1982 as trial court judge before working for the Ministry of Justice in 1986. From 1990 to 1998, he served as the General Counsel and Deputy Secretary General of the ICC International Court of Arbitration. In 1998, he was appointed as Court of Appeal Judge before being promoted to Presiding Judge in 2008.

Justice Hascher has also lectured at the Hague Academy of International Law in 1999 and was visiting Professor at University College London in 2005 and at the University of Texas at Austin in 2007. He is President of the French Society of Comparative Law (2016), Honorary Bencher of Gray’s Inn (2005) and a member of the American Law Institute (2007). Justice Hascher was also President of the Franco-British Lawyers Society from 2005 to 2008.

Justice Douglas Samuel Jones

Justice Jones graduated with a Master of Laws in 1977 from the University of Queensland, Australia and joined Clayton Utz as a Partner and Head of the firm’s Construction group in 1993. He headed their International Arbitration and Private International Law group in 1995 and in 2000 was heading Clayton Utz’s National Major Projects Group. Upon his retirement from Clayton Utz in 2014, Professor Jones became a full time independent International Arbitrator. His appointments in a number of professional bodies include - President of the International Academy of Construction Lawyers; Past President, Chartered Arbitrator, and one of four Companions, of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators; and Fellow of Resolution Australia, and of the Arbitrators & Mediators Institute of New Zealand. 

Justice Jonathan Hugh Mance

Justice Mance read law at University College, Oxford and was called to the Bar by the Middle Temple in 1965, appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1982 and a Bencher in 1989. Justice Mance was a commercial lawyer, whose practice developed a substantial international element, including considerable periods in Hong Kong and The Bahamas. He was appointed a High Court Judge in 1993 and served on the British Bench for 25 years. In Oct 2009, Justice Mance became a Justice of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom (when it was created) and he was appointed its Deputy President in 2017. He retired from the UK Supreme Court and successor to the House of Lords in June 2018. Justice Mance has written many judgments on international, commercial and European law at both the first instance and appellate levels. His specialisation in commercial law includes insurance and reinsurance, professional negligence, banking and international trade.

Justice Beverley Marian McLachlin, P.C.

Former Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin is the longest serving Chief Justice of Canada.  She retired in December 2017 after 28 years at the Supreme Court of Canada.  Justice McLachlin was appointed to the Bench of the Supreme Court of British Columbia in 1981, the Court of Appeal in 1985 and then as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of British Columbia in 1988.  In 1989, she was appointed Puisne Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada and then Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada in 2000. She is currently a member of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada. Justice McLachlin has dealt with administrative law, family law, commercial and business law, press rights and intellectual property.

Justice David Edmond Neuberger of Abbotsbury

Justice Neuberger graduated from Oxford University and was called to the Bar in 1974. He was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1987. In 1996, he was appointed to the Bench and became a Judge of the Court of Appeal in 2004. Justice Neuberger was President of the UK Supreme Court from 2012 to 2017 and has extensive experience in most areas of law including commercial law.

Justice Vivian Arthur Ramsey

Justice Ramsey served for nine years on the bench as a Judge of the High Court (Queen’s Bench Division) of England and Wales, including a three-year period as Judge in charge of the Technology and Construction Court, until 2014. He was also judge in charge of the implementation of the Jackson Reforms in the courts in England and Wales from 2012 to 2014.

In 1979, he was called to the English Bar after studying law at the City University and Inns of Court School of Law. He was appointed a Queen’s Counsel in 1992 and a Bencher of Middle Temple in 2002. Before his appointment to the bench, he specialised internationally in the area of construction, engineering and technology disputes both in international arbitration and in courts outside the UK. 

He is the co-editor of Keating on Construction Contracts, now in its 11th edition. He is also a Visiting Professor at the Dickson Poon School of Law at King’s College, London.

Justice Anselmo Reyes

Justice Reyes was appointed as a Judge of the Court of First Instance in Hong Kong and served in that capacity from 2003 to 2012. As a Judge, his specialisation was in construction, arbitration, commercial and admiralty matters. Justice Reyes obtained a BA (Law), LLM and PhD in Law from Cambridge University in 1982, 1983 and 1987 respectively, and was called to both the Hong Kong and the Singapore Bar. He was appointed Senior Counsel in Hong Kong in 2001. He is currently a Professor of Legal Practice in the Faculty of Law at the University of Hong Kong and is an active practitioner in commercial arbitration. He was Representative of the Hague Conference on Private International Law Asia Pacific Regional Office in Hong Kong from 2013 to 2017. He is also an Overseas Bencher of the Inner Temple.

Justice Bernard Rix

Justice Rix has extensive judicial experience at both first instance and appellate levels of court, as a Lord Justice of Appeal in the Court of Appeal of England and Wales from 2000 to 2013; as the Judge in charge of the Commercial Court of London from 1998 to 1999; and a Judge of High Court of Justice from 1993 to 2000. He is recognised for implementing the Woolf Reforms to civil procedure in the London Commercial Court, and for re-drafting the Guide and Practice Directions of that court. Before his appointment to the bench, he specialised in international commercial law and was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1981. He is currently a Justice of the Court of Appeal of the Cayman Islands and an arbitrator. He is also a Professor of International Commercial Law at Queen Mary, University of London.

Justice Arjan Kumar Sikri

Justice Sikri was a former Judge of the Supreme Court of India from Apr 2013 to March 2019. He was appointed Judge of the High Court of Delhi in July 1999 and served as the Acting Chief Justice of Delhi High Court from Oct 2011 before being elevated to the Chief Justice of Punjab and Haryana High Court in Sep 2012. He was subsequently appointed a Judge at the Supreme Court of India in April 2013. As a Judge, Justice Sikri issued a number of landmark judgments, particularly in the field of commercial and arbitration laws, tax laws, intellectual property matters and economic laws. He retired as the second most senior judge of the Supreme Court of India in Mar 2019.

Justice Sikri is currently a Visiting Professor in two National Law Schools in India and conducts arbitration and mediation sessions. He was conferred Doctor of Laws Honoris Causa in November 2013. In 2007, Managing Intellectual Property Association selected him as one of the 50 most influential persons in Intellectual Property in the world.

Justice Simon Joe Thorley

Justice Thorley Q.C. studied Jurisprudence at Oxford University from 1968-1971 and received the degree of MA (Hons). He was called to the Bar of England and Wales by the Honourable Society of The Inner Temple in 1972 and then began practice at the Intellectual Property Bar. He was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1989. Justice Thorley has more than 40 years of experience in Intellectual Property and related law and was a leading practitioner in that field until he ceased practice in 2014. He was a Deputy High Court Judge in England and Wales and was also the Deputy Chairman of the Copyright Tribunal in the United Kingdom for eight years. He was a co-editor of the 13th-15th Editions of Terrell on the Law of Patents, a standard work of reference on UK patent law. Justice Thorley served as Treasurer of the Inner Temple in 2013.

 

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