Sir George Newman has had a wide experience of law, both as a barrister and as a judge. His practice at the Bar was principally in London but it took him to many parts of the world, acting both as an adviser and as an advocate in Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Brunei, Fiji, the Caribbean and Bermuda.
He specialised in commercial and constitutional cases. In the latter field, as one of the leading practitioners in the Privy Council, he was instructed on matters of constitutional settlement and reform on a number of occasions, requiring his involvement in complex settlement consultations and negotiations. As a result, his experience in settling and resolving conflict has not been limited to the context of settlement of court proceedings.
In Fiji he was instructed to act for the Governor General in the return to constitutional order after the coups in 1987 and between 1987 and 1990 he was constitutional adviser to the Governor General. Subsequently he oversaw the setting up of a constitutional regime to enable the former Governor General to become the President of Fiji. After an attempted coup in Trinidad, he acted and advised in proceedings taken in the aftermath of the violence.
His experience in commercial cases in London included being instructed in the banking dispute arising out of President Carter’s freeze on Iranian banks in London and in the International Tin Council litigation. Abroad, he has acted in arbitrations as counsel for various foreign governments; for example, for the State of Qatar in a Gulf oil dispute and an arbitration concerning the security of Qatar’s border technology and for the People’s Republic of China in a commercial arbitration in Stockholm. He has acted as an arbitrator in London, Singapore and Stockholm in commercial disputes involving both foreign states and commercial entities.
As a judge of the Queen’s Bench Division, he has presided over disputes in many fields of law. As a judge nominated to sit in the Administrative Court, he has considerable experience in a wide range of judicial review cases and matters concerning human rights.
Since December 2013 Sir George has been the sole Inspector of the Iraq Fatalities Investigations.
From 2009 to 2019 Sir George was the Chair of the Security Vetting Appeals Panel based at the Cabinet Office (a part time appointment).
Between 2009 and 2011 he was a non-resident Judge of the Court of Appeal in the Bahamas.
In January 2010 the Prime Minister approved the appointment of Sir George as a Surveillance Commissioner (Home Office).
In 2013 he was appointed as a non-resident Judge of the Court of Appeal of the Cayman Islands.