BOSTON (AP) — Gov. Deval Patrick has nominated Supreme Judicial Court Justice Ralph Gants to serve as the chief justice of the state’s highest court.

If confirmed by the governor’s council, Gants would succeed Roderick Ireland, who announced last month that he plans to retire in July.

Patrick says Gants understands the need for the law to be fair and make sense in people’s lives.

Gants was appointed to the state’s high court by Patrick in 2009 after having serving as a Superior Court judge since 1997.

He was also a federal prosecutor for eight years in Massachusetts and worked as a special assistant under then-FBI director William Webster in the early 1980s.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.



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