His Honour Judge Samih Katkhuda retires as a Circuit Judge on 31 March 2010.
Sam (as everyone knew him) Kathkuda sat for many years at Isleworth, and I had the privilege of being one of the JPs who occasionally sat with him on appeals. He welcomed magistrates as equal members of the court, and always treated our views with respect. In his Chambers, waiting to go into court, one could not fail to notice the yards of bookshelf taken up by his red Judges' Notebooks, the fruit of many years' work. He had a bit of a reputation for dishing out lengthy sentences to some of those who appeared before him, and some of his decisions made the law books when they were overturned by the Court of Appeal - (Bei Bei Wang springs to mind).
Hizonner is a large chap, of a genial disposition, and was liked and respected by the professionals who came before him. I hope that he has a happy retirement - and so do quite a few West London criminals.