Indian-origin MP sworn in UK’s attorney-general
Suella Braverman, who was appointed by Prime Minister Boris Johnson to the cabinet role of attorney-general for England and Wales on February 13, was sworn in to the key role at the Royal Courts of Justice on Monday.
Goa-origin Braverman (nee Fernandes), 39, was first elected to the House of Commons in 2015 from Fareham; re-elected in 2017 and 2019. A pro-Brexit campaigner, she also chaired the European Research Group comprising Conservative MPs favouring a hard Brexit.
The swearing-in ceremony was attended by justice secretary Robert Buckland, chief justice Ian Burnett and the chair of the Bar Council, Amanda Pinto. She is the second woman appointed to the role in British legal history.
Braverman said: “It is a privilege to be sworn in as attorney general and a moment I will cherish as the second woman to be appointed to this historic role. Restoring confidence in the criminal justice system is my top priority”.
She was previously parliamentary under secretary of state at the Department for Exiting the European Union from January to November 2018.
Braverman studied Law at Cambridge and gained a Masters in Law from the University of Paris 1, Pantheon-Sorbonne and qualified as a New York attorney. Called to the Bar in 2005, she specialised in public law and judicial review.
From 2010-2015 she was on the attorney general’s panel of treasury counsel. She has defended the Home Office in immigration cases, the Parole Board in challenges by prisoners and the Ministry of Defence in matters relating to injuries sustained in battle.
The attorney general has a number of independent public interest functions, besides overseeing departments such as the Crown Prosecution Service, Serious Fraud Office and the Government Legal Department.
Other responsibilities include acting as principal legal adviser on questions of EU and international law, human rights and devolution issues; bringing proceedings for contempt of court; and legal aspects of all major international and domestic litigation involving the government.