Sheriff Graham Cox

Sheriff Graham Cox has died aged 81.

Sheriff Cox was born in Newcastle in December 1933 and was brought up in Cambuslang until he moved to Dundee at the age of 15.

He served in the British Army between 1956-1961, becoming a major in the Directorate of Army Legal Services.

He sat on the bench at Dundee for 25 years before he became Sheriff Principal at South Strathclyde, Dumfries and Galloway until his retirement..

He was called to the bar in 1962, serving as advocate depute between 1966 and 1968, when he was appointed Sheriff of Tayside, Central and Fife at Dundee.

Sheriff Cox retained this post until 1993, when he was appointed Queen’s Counsel as well as Sheriff Principal of South Strathclyde, Dumfries and Galloway – a post he remained in until 2000.

He was the first member of the judiciary to come into contact with the two Libyan men accused of carrying out the Lockerbie bombings.

The suspects appeared before him at a Scottish court at Kamp Van Zeist in the Netherlands in April 1999.

Between 1987 and 1991 he was secretary to the Sheriffs’ Association and was its president between 1991 and 1993.

Vice-president of the Dundee Bar Association, George Donnelly told The Courier said that Sheriff Cox would be remembered fondly.

He said: “Graham Cox was the sheriff who set the bar for others to aspire to, he was an intellectual giant and you couldn’t pull the wool over his eyes.

“If you could survive his court you could survive any court, he was a hard taskmaster and he didn’t suffer fools gladly.

“But his bark was worse than his bite and if you were going to trial well prepared and knew your stuff you hoped it would be him because he was extremely fair.

“If there was any doubt he would always give your client the benefit of that doubt.

“He made sure no-one mucked the court about and providing t hey were prepared he was always very supportive of young lawyers.”

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