Lord Sugar’s tribunal barrister hails from Derry

Lord Alan Sugar pictured with Stella English after she won The Apprentice 2010. (1903BM01)
Lord Alan Sugar pictured with Stella English after she won The Apprentice 2010. (1903BM01)
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The legal eagle representing multi-millionaire businessman Lord Alan Sugar in a high profile employment tribunal in London is from Derry, reports Sean McLaughlin.

Barrister Seamus Sweeney, originally from the Rosemount area of the city, is a former student of St Columb’s College.

Mr. Sweeney (47), who practises exclusively in employment law, works for the legal firm of Parklane Plowden.

The Derry man is representing Lord Sugar at a tribunal in which a winner of The Apprentice television programme is suing the multi-millionaire business mogul for constructive dismissal.

Stella English (34) won the BBC1 show in 2010 but she claimed her £100,000-a-year job was that of an “overpaid lackey” and the show’s job offer was “a sham”.

Ms English won a year-long contract and was deployed to Viglen, an IT provider. She alleges she was bullied and undermined.

But in his closing speech last week, Seamus Sweeney said Ms English’s evidence was full of “hyperbole”, and “sensationalist”. He said it was “lamentable” she had “courted the media” by selling her story.

Judgement has been reserved in the case and a decision from the tribunal panel is expected within a month.

Seamus Sweeney was called to the Bar in 1989 and practised from chambers in London until 1996.

He then joined the firm of Eversheds where he worked in-house as specialist employment counsel returning to the Bar in September 1999.

He joined Parklane Plowden Chambers in 2003.

He specialises exclusively in all aspects of employment law representing and advising local authorities, NHS Trusts, commercial organisations and private individuals.

He acts for a large number of local authorities and NHS Trusts throughout the country in connection with mass equal pay litigation and has been heavily involved in acting for and advising public sector employers generally on equal pay issues.