The British Indian Ocean Territory, or in abbreviated form BIOT, is an overseas territory of the United Kingdom. It is administered by a Commissioner, resident in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London. In terms of law, the territory is governed by the laws of the UK, where applicable; and in the case of persons subject to United States military law a special agreement applies.
The chief of state from 6 February 1952 has been Queen Elizabeth II. The commissioner for the territory has been Tony Crombie since January 2004, and the administrator has been Charles A Hamilton since 2002. The commissioner and administrator are both resident in the UK. The representative of the British government on the island is Cdr D. Howard RN.
There are no elections on the territory; the position of the monarch is hereditary and the commissioner and administrator are appointed by the monarch.
Capital punishment is prohibited under the domestic law of the British Indian Ocean Territory, although in practice United States military law (which does provide for capital punishment) applies for most BIOT residents.
Chief Justices:1981–1987: Sir John Farley Spry
1987–1998: Sir John Fieldsend
c.2007: Christopher Gardner
2015–: Simon Bryan