A barrister who was the former head of the Crown Prosecution Service and a civil rights lawyer is the UK’s new shadow minister for Brexit.
Keir Starmer, who only became an MP at last year’s general election, was appointed by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn in his ongoing reshuffle, following his victory in the leadership contest last month.
Starmer will shadow the official Brexit Minister, David Davis, although two other government ministers – Boris Johnson the Foreign Secretary and Liam Fox, Minister for International Trade.
All three government ministers have so far given conflicting accounts and mixed messages of what a Brexit might look like, ahead of Prime Minister Theresa May’s deadline of triggering Article 50 by March 2017.
Starmer was famous for defending an MI5 whistleblower, David Shayler, and the defendants in the libel case against McDonalds.
In 2008, he was appointed the head of the Crown Prosecution Service, which decides on which police investigations go forward to court in England and Wales.
In 2015, Starmer was selected to succeed Frank Dobson, a former health minister, as MP for the central London constituency of Holborn & St Pancras, which he won with a 17,000 majority.
As well as backing the Remain camp in the June referendum, Starmer supported Andy Burnham for leader in the 2015 Labour contest, which Corbyn won, and then Owen Smith in this summer’s second contest.
He has been tipped, along with Dan Jarvis and Chuka Umunna, as a possible future Labour leader himself.
Among other Corbyn reshuffle changes, fellow lawyer and former head of Liberty, the civil liberties campaign group, Shami Chakrabati, as shadow attorney general and Diane Abbott as Shadow Home Secretary.