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Salmond’s QC enjoys trip paid for by body probing him allegedly discussing trial

A QC under investigation for allegedly discussing the Alex Salmond trial when it was still ongoing has represented Scotland at a conference in the Bahamas.

Gordon Jackson attended the Caribbean event hosted by the Commonwealth Lawyers Association, paid for by the body probing his conduct.

A legal source said: “It’s ­outrageous that a man who had to resign as Dean of the Faculty of Advocates is seen as a proper representative of the Scottish legal profession.”

Salmond, Scotland’s former first minister, was acquitted of sexual offences charges last year after a legal defence conducted by the high-profile QC.

However, after the trial footage emerged of Jackson apparently discussing aspects of the case on a passenger train.

A recording appeared to show him naming female complainers and talking of putting a “smell” on one of the female witnesses.

The Faculty of Advocates is investigating a complaint about the footage and Jackson quit as Dean in the wake of the row.

However the group still stumped up thousands of pounds to cover the veteran solicitor’s costs on his trip to the Caribbean.

Jackson remained as a council member of the CLA, a group for lawyers, academics and students practising within the ­Commonwealth.

On its website it promised the conference, held this month in the West Indies, would be set against the “spectacular backdrop of crystal seas, picturesque cays, ­soft-sand beaches and dramatic sunsets”. Topics pencilled in for discussion included “sexism in the legal profession”.

Jackson: “I’m a council member of the Commonwealth Law ­Association. The council member represents Scotland.”

Asked if it would have been better if someone else had gone because he is under investigation, he said: “The Dean was there ­representing Faculty, he was there. I was representing Scottish lawyers as a whole as a council member.”

Jackson, a former Labour MSP, said he did not go to the beach, adding: “I hate the beach. I can’t be accused of lying about in a beach for a week because I was never on a beach once.”

A spokesman for Rape Crisis Scotland, which made the complaint about Jackson’s comments on the train, said: “There are serious questions to be answered about the appropriateness of this, given Jackson is currently under investigation – and has been for some time – for serious misconduct in relation to complainers of sexual crime.”

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A Faculty of Advocates spokesman said: “Gordon Jackson QC was involved as a member of the council.

“The costs of the Scottish ­representative’s attendance are borne by his or her regulatory body as is the case whenever attendance at such events is required.”

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