Gay rights activist

Tributes paid to top lawyer Derek Ogg, dead at 65

Derek Ogg: described by the First Minister as ‘a brilliant advocate’

Top QC and civil rights activist Derek Ogg has been found dead at his home. He was 65.

Arguably, his career peak was campaigning for the 2018 law which automatically pardoned gay and bisexual men convicted of sexual offences that are no longer illegal.

Mr Ogg had been both a Crown prosecutor and a defence advocate.

He was found dead at his home in Langside, Glasgow at 8.10pm on Friday, having suffered what was described as a “tragic accident”.

Police Scotland said there “would appear to be no suspicious circumstances”. A report will be submitted to the Procurator Fiscal.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said Mr Ogg was a “brilliant advocate and a truly lovely man”.

All of us who knew Derek Ogg are deeply saddened by his passing.

– Gordon Jackson QC

SNP MP and lawyer Joanna Cherry QC wrote: “So sad to hear of the death of Derek Ogg QC. 

“A fine advocate, a good friend & colleague & so eloquent & funny. 

Solicitor Aamer Anwar said: “So sad to hear of passing of Derek Ogg QC, beautiful man of deep intellect, humility and humour, never forgot his kindness in dark times. 

Gordon Jackson QC, dean of Faculty of Advocates, said: “All of us who knew Derek Ogg are deeply saddened by his passing.

“He was a marvellous advocate but more than that he was a fierce campaigner for his beliefs both on a personal and professional level. He will be greatly missed by everyone at the faculty.”

Fellow advocate Niall McCluskey added: “Very sad to hear of the news of Derek Ogg QC’s death.

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“He was one of the best Criminal advocates of his generation and he had a unique and very creative approach to his work. He will be missed.”

Fellow QC Tony Graham, stable director of Optimum Advocates, of which Mr Ogg was a member, said: “Whilst Derek was one of most well-read individuals one could encounter, he was also a man who was full of fun, compassion and ready to assist anyone – colleague or not – in any way he could.

“He provided an ear to those who needed his wisdom, could put a smile on the face of the sullen, inspire a laugh from those engrossed in sadness, and create a conversation in even the solemnest of rooms. Often, he did all of these things in a self-deprecating way.”

He added: “We have lost not just a committed and talented colleague, but a loyal and generous friend. Glasgow High Court will be an unfortunately quieter place without Derek as he leaves a void uneasy to fill.”

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