Sir Keir Starmer selected to contest safe Labour seat

Sir Keir Starmer
Image caption Sir Keir has been praised for his "courage, integrity and principles"

Former director of public prosecutions Sir Keir Starmer has been selected to fight a safe Labour seat in next year's general election.

Sir Keir will contest the Holborn and St Pancras seat in central London.

It is being vacated by ex-cabinet minister Frank Dobson after 34 years.

Sir Keir saw off four challengers to win the right to contest the seat, including council leader Sarah Hayward, doctor Patrick French, lawyer Raj Chada and councillor Angela Pobe.

Earlier this week former Labour leader Lord Kinnock praised Sir Keir for his "courage, integrity and principles".

The human rights lawyer was the director of public prosecutions and head of the Crown Prosecution Service for England and Wales from 2008 to 2013.

He will now seek to defend Mr Dobson's 9,942 majority in the constituency in May's election.

Labour's Emily Thornberry - the MP for Islington south and Finsbury - tweeted: "Congratulations & best wishes to @Keir_Starmer selected this afternoon as our Labour candidate in Holborn & St Pancras."

And former Mayor of London Ken Livingston tweeted: "Congratulations to @Keir_Starmer who will make a fantastic candidate for Labour in Holborn and St Pancras #ToriesMustGo".

In December 2013, Labour appointed Sir Keir as head of an inquiry into finding the best way to protect rape victims and abused children from harrowing questioning during court cases.

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