Magistrate under investigation for passing 'confidential information' to journalists

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A magistrate who is a former leader of Derby City Council has been reprimanded by Lord Chancellor Liz Truss after releasing confidential information to journalists

Conservative Philip Hickson, a magistrate in south Derbyshire (pictured), became the subject of a “judicial conduct investigation” after being censured by Derby City Council’s standards board for releasing “information to the media which he should have known was confidential”.

A spokesman for the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office, which investigates complaints about judges, said Truss had concluded that Hickson’s actions fell below the standard expect of a magistrate.

Detail has emerged in statement on the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office website.

“Mr Philip Hickson JP, a magistrate appointed to the Southern Derbyshire Bench, was subject to a judicial conduct investigation as a result of a censure he received from the Derby City Council Standards Board, whilst he was still a councillor, for releasing information to the media which he should have known was confidential,” said the statement.

“The Lord Chancellor … considered that Mr Hickson’s actions fell below the standard expected of a magistrate and (has) issued him with a reprimand.”

Hickson first become a Derby City Council member in 1985 – and was council leader between 2011 and 2012 and is a former Derbyshire Police Authority chairman.

He stepped down as the council’s Conservative group leader in February and did not stand for re-election as a councillor in May.

Picture: Google Maps

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