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King's Inns role for ex-justice chief

THE former Secretary General of the Department of Justice is to take up a new role as CEO of the King's Inns, the body that educates barristers.

Sean Aylward, a career public servant who is Ireland's representative on the Council of Europe's Committee for the Prevention of Torture, will take up his new full-time role as Under Treasurer – or chief executive – with the law school in July.

When he retired as secretary general in 2011, he was eligible for a full pension of half his salary of €214,187 and a lump sum of €321,280. The new role is a full-time position with the near 500-year-old private organisation. It is not known how much he will be paid.

Mr Aylward's appointment comes as the legal profession is facing major reforms ahead of the introduction of Justice Minister Alan Shatter's Legal Services Bill, which is due to be debated this summer.

It also comes at a time when the judiciary are on a collision course with the Government in the wake of cuts to the pay and pension of new entrants and as Mr Shatter presses judges to cut their holidays and work longer hours.

Mr Aylward was head of the prison service prior to becoming secretary general of the Department of Justice.

Mr Aylward angered residents of the former Magdalene Laundries when he told a key United Nations committee that the 'vast majority' of women entered Magdalene Laundries voluntarily or with consent.

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