I’m no have a go hero, says judge who helped collar housebreaker

ONE of Scotland’s most senior judges, Lord Reed, has revealed that he stopped an intruder who he caught breaking into a neighbour’s home.

Lord Reed, who sits on the UK’s highest court – the Supreme Court – told The Scotsman that he confronted a man on his neighbour’s property in an upmarket area of Edinburgh after spotting him “sneaking about”.

The law lord, who also served on the European Court of Human Rights, said that he was just been a “good neighbour” after he heard a house alarm while he was out gardening recently and went to investigate.

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The intruder had managed to break into the property in the leafy, suburban area. The man fled the scene empty-handed went he came out into the garden and was confronted..

Lord Reed said he was “not at all” scared about challenging the intruder, who he said was not threatening or aggressive during the confrontation.

He said: “I noticed a neighbour’s alarm had went off, so I went around to the property and found someone sneaking about.

“I challenged him and he didn’t have a satisfactory explanation, so I reported it to the police and a person was detained “.

Lord Reed, who was involved in the judgments on the appeals of the killers of toddler James Bulger, said the incident happened on the afternoon of 27 May. However, he downplayed suggestions of heroism.

He said: “It wasn’t derring-do. I was working in the garden and I heard the alarm go off so I went around. It was just being a good neighbour and I hope it’s the sort of thing anyone would do. It was just a bit unusual.”

Lord Reed, who was educated at the independent George Watson’s College in Edinburgh, was sworn in as a Justice of the Supreme Court of the UK in February this year.

He is convener of the charity, Children in Scotland, and chairman of the University of Edinburgh Centre for Commercial Law. He is also an Honorary Professor of Law at Glasgow Caledonian University,

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Lord Reed was admitted to the faculty of advocates in 1983. His career also includes services as standing junior counsel to the Scottish Education Department from 1988 to 1989, and to the Scottish Office Home and Health Department from 1989 to 1995.

During 1999, he sat as an ad hoc judge of the European Court of Human Rights

Senior Conservative MSP Murdo Fraser, a lawyer by profession, praised Lord Reed for confronting the housebreaker and said that the judge had set a “good example” by his actions.

He said: “Well done to Lord Reed for standing up to a criminal and for setting such a good example.

“We can’t always just rely on the police when we see crimes being committed.

“I’m sure that Lord Reed’s experience will help leave him very sympathetic to dealing with those who have to stand up to crime in their communities.”

Last night, police confirmed they had arrested a man in connection with an alleged break-in on the street.