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World News

Most High Court judges will be women in Australia first

CANBERRA, Australia — Most judges sitting on Australia’s highest court will be women for the first time in the institution’s 121-year history, the attorney general said on Thursday.

Justice Jayne Jagot will fill a High Court vacancy on her seven-judge bench when Justice Patrick Keane retires on October 17, Attorney General Mark Dreyfus has said.

Jagot has been a Federal Court judge since 2008.

Dreyfus said Jagot’s gender did not figure into his decision to cast her after consultations with high-profile judges and lawyers.

“It was about appointing the best possible person to the High Court,” Dreyfus told reporters. “Judge Jagot is an eminent jurist and brings tremendous experience and has been nominated by many, many people.”

Jargot will be the 56th judge and only the seventh woman to sit on the High Court since its creation in 1901. The four women to sit on the bench from next month will include Chief Justice Susan Kiefel.

Keane leaves the bench after nine years – and less than two weeks before reaching the court’s mandatory retirement age on his 70th birthday.

ABC News

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