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News Roundup


A selection of solicitors and other lawyers in the news since 1996

Follow the hyperlinks to the external source (opens in a new window) or an UnjustIS news sheet.  Most recently posted items top the list.


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Also see: Miners' Claims News for reporting on solicitors' involvement in misdirecting compensation intended for sick miners.


Solicitors and other lawyers making the news.  1996 to present

Also check: The Serious Fraud Office publications about solicitors' involvement in serious frauds

Title and description of item or excerpt.

Links - the full story

Date posted on UnjustIS










Lawyer hid camera in ladies' loo

A solicitor has admitted hiding a video camera inside a ladies' toilet cubicle and secretly filming female staff. Stirling Sheriff Court heard that Peter Fitzpatrick, 49, put the device into a cardboard box within the cubicle at law firm Muirhead Buchanan in Stirling. The father-of-two, who has been a solicitor for 27 years, was caught after a secretary noticed a hole in the box was pointing at the pedestal. Fitzpatrick, of Rutherglen, is due to be sentenced next month.


09 Jun 2008

Crooked solicitor spent client money on 'a Rolex, loose women and drink'

Three crooked members of a family law firm who lived a life of luxury on £840,000 of clients' cash have been thrown out of the profession. Imran, Saira and Shamim Karim were described as "dangerous to the profession and the public" after they kept money from property deals. Senior partner Imran Karim, 40, boasted five cars including a Ferrari 335 Belinetta and a north London flat, all paid for by clients of Karim and Co.

Croydon Guardian

09 Jun 2008

Convicted pedophile JP jailed

A magistrate from Croydon known as "The Zoo Man" who trawled the internet for images of children being sexually abused was today jailed for nine months. Zoologist Terry Mills, 58, spent his days visiting primary schools showing children exotic reptiles and his evenings building up a library of child pornography. He watched a film entitled "German Blondie" and received emails marked "British Boys" and "Busy at Both Ends", Southwark Crown Court heard.

Croydon Guardian

09 Jun 2008

Seven years for money launderer

A PROPERTY magnate from Canons Park who laundered at least £13.8m with an Ealing lawyer has been jailed for seven years. John Donnan, 52, of Watersfield Way, ran a series of bogus companies with his solicitor, Gerard Hyde, 55, of Priory Gardens, allowing friends to operate a 16-month VAT fraud. The firms imported mobile phones tax free but sold them on with an extra 17.5 per cent profit, which was then shared with Donnan and Hyde.

Harrow Times

24 May 2008

Struck off after spending thousands on strippers

A LAWYER from Highgate has been kicked out of the profession after he blew more than £200,000 of his firm's cash on strippers. Divorced father of three Paul Saffron, 43, from Stanhope Road, raided the accounts of top law firm Radcliffes Le Brasseur over more than three years. He spent most of the cash on lap dancers in clubs across London. Colleagues at the 150-year-old law firm called in the police when they discovered a £104,000 hole in the accounts. Saffron insisted he was clinically depressed and had only spent the money quickly so he would have no alternative but to kill himself out of shame when he was discovered. But last Thursday, the Solicitors' Disciplinary Tribunal ignored his pleas to be allowed to stay in the profession.

Hampstead & Highgate Expr

15 May 2008

Burnley fraud lawyer ‘has lost everything’

A SOLICITOR who forged another lawyer's signature on a legal document has been thrown out of the profession. Philip Lowe, 42, formerly of Low Bank, Burnley, signed papers so the estate of a client could be handled quickly, the Solicitors' Disciplinary Tribunal heard. When inspectors raided his firm they found he had been using client's money for his own benefit by keeping the cash in his own bank account. Lowe, who, the hearing was told, now sold paint for a living, tried to stage a cover up by wrongly billing clients to balance his books. He has now lost his family, his firm and his home because of his dishonesty, the hearing was told. Lowe who ran his own firm in Main Street, Cross Hills, Keig-hley, was cleared of fraud at a Bradford Crown Court trial but admitted using a false ins-trument and was fined £515. Ian Ryan, for the Law Society, told the hearing investigators found a £35,332 black hole' in Lowe''s books when they raided the firm on July 4 2005. Money which should have been paid into the client account had been deposited in the firm's account which were controlled solely by Lowe.

Burnley Citizen

01 May 2008

Hetherington: Fox Hayes, Abbey, Square Mile

Mrs K.C. writes: I read in Financial Mail some time ago the result of the Financial Services & Markets Tribunal hearing about solicitor Fox Hayes, but there has been no further news. I foolishly invested practically all my money, about £60,000, in shares sold by brokers represented by Fox Hayes. I have recovered only £5,000. This has gone on for so long, I'm now almost giving up. I will be 93 in June.

"Leeds solicitor Fox Hayes, which is licensed as an investment adviser by the Financial Services Authority, stupidly and corruptly teamed up with a network of crooked boiler room share peddlers. Throughout 2003 and 2004, Financial Mail repeatedly warned that the firm was fronting for known tricksters posing as stockbrokers based in Spain. Privately, I gave full details to Fox Hayes, proving that it was lending its name to mailshots from firms run by people who would never in a million years get a licence from the FSA, who did not have a licence from Spain's financial watchdog, and who were selling shares so rotten that I'm surprised anyone gave you as much as £5,000 for them..."It cannot be right that a firm or an individual can commit an offence, pay a fine that is less than victims have actually lost and then carry on as if nothing has happened."

This is Money

13 Apr

Lawyer who killed his wife is released after just two years - and inherits £950,000 from her estate

A wealthy lawyer who killed his wife after she had an affair is set to inherit nearly £1million from her will after being freed from jail. Christopher Lumsden, 54, was said to have "snapped" after his wife Alison, 53, announced she was leaving him for a family friend. He attacked her at their £1.4million mansion, slashing her on the face and neck with a knife so badly a pathologist could not count the number of wounds she had suffered.

This is London

08 Apr 2008

Solicitor guilty of fraud jailed

A solicitor who stole more than £1m from a disabled client has been jailed for 10 years at Machester Crown Court. Thomas McGoldrick, 59, of Faulkners Lane, Mobberley, Cheshire, lived a life of "extravagance" while taking the money from client Keith Anderson. Mr Anderson, 45, from Croydon, had been awarded £1.8m after he was severely injured in a road crash. Belfast-born McGoldrick was convicted of 59 counts of fraud in February and was sentenced on Monday. He was £1.4m in debt when his firm, who had practices called McGoldricks in Altrincham, Greater Manchester and Croydon, took on Mr Anderson's case.


08 Apr 2008

Fiddling solicitor struck off

A SOLICITOR who took money from the dead for work he had not carried out has been thrown out of the profession. Christopher Dudzinski, 49, of Dudzinski and Partners, Butts Court, Leeds, claimed thousands of pounds from the estates of late clients and ploughed the cash into his firm. Investigators found he also told customers he was investing their money when in fact it was being kept in the firm's accounts. Financial records were not properly written up and an investigation in 2006 revealed a £25,975 'black hole' in the client accounts. Dudzinski accepted he withdrew clients' money before he billed them for his work, the Solicitors' Disciplinary Tribunal in London heard. "A large part of the shortfall, £21,230, was in respect of costs transferred from client to office account in circumstances where bills had not been delivered to the client," said Jonathan Goodwin, for the Solicitors' Disciplinary Authority. Dudzinski was acting for the executors of a will when he took £2,350 from the estate of a dead man after his affairs had been completed. When questioned, the lawyer said he thought he deserved more for the work done previously.

Yorkshire Evening Post

01 Apr 2008

Seven years jail for lawyer who siphoned £900,000 from wills to feather his nest

A crooked lawyer has been jailed for seven years after he looted £900,000 from wills and cash meant for charity so he could send his children to public school, stock up with vintage wines and drive a classic sports car. In the course of 28 years, Michael Wright, now 66, doubled or trebled his actual salary. He set up seven false identities to channel the money from wills and had the power to sign cheques paying legacies to their bank accounts. When families complained or became suspicious he simply stole from other estates to pay them what they were owed, Exeter Crown Court was told. The lawyer, officially on £29,000 a year, was caught when his employers, solicitors Harold Mitchelmore of Newton Abbot, Devon, introduced a new audit system.

Daily Mail

20 Mar 2008

Couple stripped of £5million

A Weybridge solicitor and his wife have been stripped of £5.3million of criminal assets hidden overseas. The Assets Recovery Agency was granted a High Court order to take the money from John and Susan Ann Szepietowski of Ashford House, Four Winds Park, St George's Hill, following an investigation prompted by a separate drugs trafficking and money laundering probe by Surrey Police. The ARA alleged the Szepietowskis had amassed a large property portfolio through fraudulent mortgage claims and the laundering of rental income through offshore accounts. It also alleged that the Szepietowskis benefited from a phoenix fraud scam, involving the publishing of adult magazines, and that their lavish lifestyle greatly exceeded their known legitimate income. Solicitor Mr Szepietowski and his former building society manager wife entered negotiations with the ARA in October last year.

Wimbledon Guardian

17 Mar 2008

Crooked veteran solicitor struck off

A CROOKED solicitor took almost £100,000 from bereaved clients and used the cash to pay her tax bill, a hearing was told. University of Huddersfield law lecturer Lorraine Miers, 49, blamed her cheating husband for financial difficulties when he had an affair with her student, the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal heard. Yesterday she was struck off and ordered to pay costs of £10,000.

Yorkshire Evening Post

14 Mar 2008

McGoldrick investigated before

A LAWYER who stole more than £1m from a disabled man to feed his champagne lifestyle was investigated for financial irregularities more than ten years ago, the M.E.N. reveal. `Bent' solicitor Thomas McGoldrick, 59, was described by police as `shameless, selfish, greedy and calculating' after being found guilty of false accounting, money laundering, forgery and obtaining pecuniary advantage by deception. He stole the money from Keith Anderson who had been awarded £1.8 million damages as a result of a road accident which left him paralysed from the chest down. And McGoldrick, who lives in a luxury home in Mobberley, Cheshire, was only caught when Mr Anderson had £200 left and the Law Society called in the police to investigate...In 1997 he was criticised by the Law Society after more than £40,000 went missing from a client's account.
This was followed by a series of other misdemeanours relating to his accounts and the financial management of his firm, but despite serious concerns, the Law Society allowed him to continue practising as a lawyer until 2004. (The Law Society is no more than a corrupt gangsters' union.UJ)

Manchester Evening News

23 Feb 2008

Solicitor guilty of £1.2m fraud

A solicitor who conned more than £1m from a disabled client has been found guilty of fraud.
Thomas McGoldrick, 59, of Faulkners Lane, Mobberley, Cheshire, had denied the charges at Manchester Crown Court. The court heard he lived a life of "extravagance" while taking the money from client Keith Anderson. Mr Anderson, 45, of Croydon, had been awarded £1.8m following a crash which left him paralysed but McGoldrick claimed he had "gifted" him the money. Mr Anderson was paid damages after the accident in Croydon in November 1996, which left him paralysed from the chest down. The solicitor, who had practices called McGoldricks in Altrincham, Greater Manchester and Croydon, went on to take about £1.2m of the cash.


22 Feb 2008

Solicitor cleared of fraud but admits forgery

A bankrupt solicitor faces being struck off after he was convicted of forgery. A jury at Bradford Crown Court acquitted 42-year-old Philip Lowe on two charges of conspiracy to defraud in connection with a property scam after more than five hours of deliberation yesterday. But he had admitted forging a signature on a document before the start of the trial. The prosecution had alleged that Lowe had been part of a plot, which also involved five other people, to cheat owners out of properties in Rooley Lane, Bradford, and Eastburn, near Keighley.

Telegraph & Argus

17 Nov 2007

Solicitor gets two years for fraud

A disgraced Merseyside solicitor has been jailed for two years for his involvement in a £1.5 million “advance fee” fraud. David Sasson made £250,000 from the fraud, Liverpool Crown Court heard. Sasson had been struck-off after admitting stealing from his employers. His father-in-law got him a job with Carl Montlake and his business partner in 1993, working as an underwriter. Based in Bury New Road, Manchester, Alliance International Ventures was set up in 1997 and, according to prosecutor Jonathan Turner QC, was “a fraud from the outset”. He added: “Its business was ostensibly to offer funding to foreign applicants looking to raise finance for business projects abroad. “The truth is, and always was, that Alliance had no money at all. Notwithstanding their total lack of funds, Alliance began to offer overseas customers sums of anything between $500,000 and $120,000,000.”

Jewish Chronicle

02 Nov 2007

High-life solicitor, Thomas Byrne, goes on the run as mortgage ‘scam’ comes to light

They were the epitome of the Celtic Tiger economic boom, enjoying to the full their good fortune and wealth with money lavished on expensive cars, exclusive homes and fine dining. Now one is on the run and the other has had his assets frozen as the banks and courts go after two high-profile solicitors with debts of more than £50 million. Ireland has never seen a legal scandal like it, with one newspaper describing the fate of Michael Lynn and Thomas Byrne as “a cautionary tale about the inevitable consequences of the greed, arrogance and recklessness that fuelled the Celtic Tiger”.

Times Online

27 Oct 2007


A Solicitor who falsely claimed more than £4,000 in overtime and asked clients to write cheques out to his personal account has been spared jail. Judge David Price told David York that his actions were a breach of trust, but did not jail him because he helps to care for his autistic son. He was sentenced to 12 months in prison, suspended for two years. York worked at Pyms Solicitors in Bridge Street, Belper, on civil court cases.

Derbyshire Evening Telegraph

16 Oct 2007

False claim solicitor disciplined

A solicitor has been found guilty of professional misconduct for making fake and inflated legal aid claims. Paul Kirk, 48, from Uddingston, South Lanarkshire, made thousands of pounds by double-charging and claiming false expenses. The Scottish Solicitors' Discipline Tribunal, who looked at the case, fined Kirk the maximum of £10,000. However, because he was no longer registered as a praticising solicitor it could take no further action. The disciplinary tribunal said it lacked the power to properly discipline the lawyer. It wants legislation which would create tougher penalties for rogue solicitors.


10 Oct 2007

Solicitor in Ledward abuse case struck off

A solicitor who left clients owing thousands in costs after a group damages claim against former gynaecologist Dr Rodney Ledward collapsed was struck off today. Jane Loveday represented more than 50 women who claim they had been sexually assaulted by the consultant gynaecologist, who was barred from practicing medicine in 1998. A subsequent claim for damages brought against Dr Ledward’s former NHS trust, spearheaded by Mrs Loveday, was dropped in 2004 after legal aid was withdrawn, a solicitor’s disciplinary tribunal was told.

Times Online

10 Oct 2007

Tadley solicitor handed six-month jail term for scamming banks and building societies

A TADLEY solicitor has been jailed for his part in a mortgage scam. Robert Stober, aged 68, of Silchester Road, Tadley, was handed a six-month jail term at Winchester Crown Court last Thursday, July 19. Also in the dock was businessman Douglas Caffell, aged 42, of Long Lane, Shaw, who received a suspended sentence. In February this year, ringleader Phillip Carter, aged 41, of The Green, Silchester, admitted four counts of false accounting, five counts of conspiracy to defraud and three counts of obtaining money transfer by deception. The court heard Carter had tried to re-mortgage property without declaring his exisiting mortgages and loans. Several banks and building societies fell foul of his scam.

Newbury Today

27 Jul 2007


A Plymouth-based solicitor has been jailed for two years for fiddling cheques and expenses totalling £19,000. Priya Prashar, aged 29, of Trobridges, doctored cheques to make them payable to her own bank account while working for another firm in London. She denied the charges but was found guilty after a trial of false accounting, theft and perverting the course of justice. Prashar, who gave her address as Harrow in West London, moved to the Mutley-based firm two years ago after the offences were committed in 2003 and 2004. But Trobridges partner Tim Waine said that the firm only became aware of the allegations about nine months ago.

The Herald Plymouth

18 Jul 2007

TV 'sting' solicitor struck off

A solicitor filmed in a TV "sting" giving advice to an undercover journalist on how to stop witnesses testifying has been struck off. David Lancaster, 57, from Havant, Hampshire, was taken off the solicitors' roll at a Solicitors' Disciplinary Tribunal on Thursday. Lancaster was jailed for three years in October for inciting the reporter to pervert the course of justice.


06 Jul 2007

Law firm fights FSA over ‘boiler rooms’

The Financial Services Authority (FSA) is locked in a court battle with a prominent firm of solicitors that it wants to fine £150,000 for alleged offences involving overseas “boiler rooms”. Alleged regulatory breaches by Fox Hayes, a Leeds law firm, helped five boiler room firms to target more than a thousand UK investors, who lost almost $21 million in 2003 and 2004, according to court documents. Fox Hayes approved 34 financial promotions by boiler room firms, the FSA argues, and carried on in the face of numerous warning signs that their customers were not being treated fairly. Fox Hayes began its challenge yesterday in the Financial Services & Markets Tribunal, which is essentially a court of appeal for FSA enforcement decisions. (Updated news item 31 October 2007. UJ)

Times Online

06 Jun 2007

Boiler room victim is 91

Mrs K.C. writes: I am so ashamed I hardly feel able to tell you about my utter stupidity. Stockbroker Tresaderns in Madrid persuaded me to invest in Satellite Enterprise Corp and later Military Communications Technologies. As I was paying through solicitors Fox Hayes in Leeds, I felt secure. I made other investments too. However, a letter from Tresaderns told me they were no longer in business. At 91, I am struggling... You were fleeced. Almost all the shares you bought were in tiny American companies with little or no track record. The shares were so high-risk that legally they could not be sold to ordinary Americans. Yet Tresaderns was happy to sell them and Fox Hayes was happy to accept your cash.(Updated news item 31 October 2007. UJ)

This is Money

04 Jun 2007

Solicitor's life in tatters after she admits stealing £1,300 from law firm

A YOUNG solicitor yesterday admitted stealing cash from her employer. Zosia Fraser, 29, was considered a promising lawyer with excellent prospects until her dishonesty came to light. She was subsequently sacked from her position with a Scottish law firm amid claims she was caught charging clients upfront cash payments that she then pocketed for herself.

The Scotsman

12 May 2007

FSA bankrupts boiler room scam lawyer

Solicitor Adrian Sam has been made bankrupt by the Financial Services Authority (FSA) after his law firm Adrian Sam & Co (ASC) assisted an illegal overseas boiler room scam. The FSA took the action after ASC and the firm's former partner John Martin failed to comply with a Court of Appeal ruling in 2005 that ordered the law firm to pay £360,000 to 63 investors to whom it helped peddle cut-price shares as part of the scam. Jonathan Phelan, the FSA's head of retail enforcement, said: "This case is a warning to others who act as a UK front for boiler rooms that the FSA will use its full powers against them where possible to recover losses for the victims of their illegal activities."

The Lawyer

29 Mar 2007

Shamed cash solicitor struck off

A FORMER Ipswich solicitor who siphoned off nearly £27,400 of a client's money, is in disgrace today after being struck off. The Solicitors' Disciplinary Tribunal found Keith Croft improperly transferred the funds into his firm's account after telling a colleague he might keep the money left over from a French holiday home purchase. Croft, a solicitor since 1983 and sole principal of Riddell Croft and Co in St Helen's Street, was alleged to have breached the Solicitors Accounts Rules 1998, although he did not attend the tribunal.

Evening Star

22 Feb 2007

Lawyer banned from legal aid work

A law firm which earned more than £400,000 in legal aid last year has been barred from further work in the field, officials have said. The move follows an investigation into the firm, Robert Taylor Solicitors of Bath Street in Glasgow. The Scottish Legal Aid Board said it had removed the firm from its register of criminal legal aid lawyers. "The firm and solicitor cannot provide criminal legal aid or criminal advice and assistance," said the board. Last year the firm's legal aid earnings totalled £409,300. In November last year, the Daily Record reported heroin users were paid in £5 notes to sign legal aid documents.


07 Feb 2007

Solicitor admits theft

A FORMER solicitor who lost £250,000 through his business and a property deal admitted theft and criminal damage when he appeared at Worcester Crown Court. Andrew Dutton, aged 61, of Longmead Chambers, Birtsmorton, was said to be penniless and eking out his £100-a-week benefit by offering legal advice on a website. Giving him a two-year conditional discharge, Judge John Cavell told him: "It's tragic to see a man of your professional background standing in the dock at crown court over what is a civil dispute. You behaved extremely stupidly."

Malvern Gazette

26 Jan 2007

Lawyer 'planned sex with child'

A solicitor has been ordered to do 180 hours community service after asking a prostitute to arrange sex for him with a mother and an underage girl. Glasgow Sheriff Court heard how Ian Donnelly had sneaked away from his office for the encounter, but the vice girl called police and he was arrested. Officers later found child pornography on Donnelly's home computer. Donnelly, 43, who had admitted a number of charges, was also put on the sex offenders' register for three years. The personal injury solicitor, who worked for Lloyd Green in the city's Cadogan Square, was also placed on probation for three years and ordered to take part in counselling. (Unlikely to be struck off, though. UJ)


25 Jan 2007

Solicitor jailed for £100k theft

A solicitor has been jailed for stealing almost £100,000 from clients to compensate others he had failed. Jeremy Langworthy, 48, of Abergavenny, admitted taking money from accounts to make up "acceptable" compensation sums for other clients. Prosecutor Michael Mather-Lees told Merthyr Crown Court: "Langworthy was effectively robbing Peter to pay Paul." He was jailed for 18 months after admitting seven charges of theft totalling £99,400 and one of forgery.


16 Jan 2007

Solicitor who drew up his mother’s will to inherit her fortune defeated in court

A Borehamwood solicitor drew up his mother's will without her knowledge or approval' in order to inherit part of her large estate, a High Court judge has ruled. Morley Franks, 63, a partner in Turner & Debenhams, in Shenley Road, had hoped to prove a will he drew up in 1994 was valid, but Mr Justice David Richards said the solicitor was not a witness on whose evidence I can rely' and not telling the truth'. Mr Franks has been practising in Borehamwood since 1978, first as a partner in Measures Franks & Co until 2004, then when it merged with Turner & Debenhams. He specialises in wills and probate laws. This week, his firm refused to comment on his position following the judgement, which took place at the High Court in December.

This is Hertfordshire

11 Jan 2007

Ex-lawyer goes bankrupt

A former Shrewsbury lawyer who was struck off for pocketing a client’s cash has declared himself bankrupt. Stephen Morecroft was ordered to pay £22,885.42 in costs by a Solicitors’ Disciplinary Tribunal in May. The hearing was told Mr Morecroft was given £10,897.06 by a client for a deposit on a new home to be bought off-plan. In November 2005 the Law Society intervened in his firm, Morecroft and Co, in Barker Street, Shrewsbury, and officials discovered the firm’s accounts held only £1,194. The tribunal struck off Morecroft after finding a string of allegations, which included accounts rule breaches and failing to act in the best interests of clients, proved against him.

Shropshire Star

09 Jan 2007

Solicitor struck off for lying to bosses

A newly-qualified solicitor who admitted lying to cover up a basic legal blunder just weeks after becoming a lawyer has been struck off. Michael Hopkins, 43, misled his bosses at Inghams, based in Winckley Square, Preston, to avoid exposing his error in exchanging contracts too early on a property transaction for a client.

Lancashire Evening Post

19 Dec 2006

Carousel fraud four jailed

Four men have been jailed for a total of 57 years for running an elaborate VAT fraud that cheated taxpayers out of £10 million. The scam, which centred on the trading activities of a Scottish company called Virgini Ltd, involved making false VAT claims for mobile phones that were supposedly being imported into the UK and exported to Ukraine. In fact, there was no evidence the phones ever existed.

Director Durgesh Mehta, 51, was jailed for a total of 33 years after being convicted of cheating the public revenue, money laundering, and conspiracy to transfer criminal property under the Proceeds of Crime Act. His sentences will run concurrently. The wealthy solicitor lived in the stockbroker belt village of Chalfont St Peter, in Buckinghamshire, and commuted weekly to Scotland. His three accomplices - Gerald Reardon, 55, from Kent, Matthew Sharman, 43 from Essex, and Peter Ratcliff, 54, from Surrey - each received eight year prison sentences for laundering the proceeds through offshore companies.


28 Oct 2006

Solicitor raided couple's account of £100,000

A Golders Green solicitor has been 'struck off' after stealing more than £100,000 from clients. Winston Jesiah Held, 64, of Sinclair Grove, cleared the account of an unnamed couple he was advising about selling their house, an industrial tribunal heard. Held worked as a consultant at Jay Benning and Peltz and Talbot Creggy in Marylebone.

Hampstead & Highgate Times

24 Oct 2006

Dishonest lawyer struck off

A crooked lawyer from Preston built up a property portfolio by taking more than £239,000 from clients, including First World War veterans, a tribunal heard. Ian Desmond, the 53-year-old former chief executive of the Lancashire law firm Marsdens, misappropriated the money to buy houses. The Solicitors' Disciplinary Tribunal struck off Desmond, of Mallowdale, Fulwood, after hearing details of "the most appalling dishonesty".

Preston Today

19 Oct 2006

Solicitor jailed after BBC reporter's sting

A Havant solicitor targeted by a "TV sting" has been jailed for three years. David Lancaster, 56, from Harbourside, was convicted of inventing stories to get a man off a drugs supply offence - unaware that he was an investigative reporter telling him a cover tale. Lancaster was told by Judge Graham Cottle at Exeter Crown Court: "You broke every rule in the book in a breatttaking display of unprofessional conduct."..."The judge told Lancaster the British criminal justice system is held up as a model of fairness and good practice, and in order to maintain that reputation it is of paramount importance that professionals involved in the system behave at all times with honesty and integrity."

Press Gazette

See also:

Times Online



18 Oct 2006

Solicitor jailed for helping gunman

A solicitor was jailed for a year at the Old Bailey today for smuggling a letter out of Belmarsh jail to help a gunman accused of shooting a trial witness. Maya Devani, a former member of law firm Arani & Co, which defended the radical cleric Abu Hamza, was convicted earlier this year of attempting to pervert the course of justice. Her client, Timothy Merchant, was found guilty of two charges of attempted murder and perverting the course of justice and was jailed today for 18 years. Devani was told by Judge Paul Focke: "The authorities need to be able to trust and rely on the integrity of solicitors. You let them down."

Times Online

30 Sep 2006

27 months for lawyer who robbed 'friend' of £70,000

HE was once a successful and well- connected lawyer, a city councillor and a man tipped to be a future Westminster MP. But yesterday, the political aspirations of Iain Catto were ended forever when he was jailed for 27 months for stealing £70,000 from a disabled client, who depended upon him as a close friend. Catto took the money over two years from December 2002 to maintain his lifestyle of foreign travel and exclusive restaurants after losing his job as a solicitor. He now faces a hearing before the independent Scottish Solicitors' Discipline Tribunal, where he could be struck off.

The Scotsman

27 Sep 2006

Jailed ex-solicitor loses Citizens Advice Bureau job

A THIEVING solicitor who was working as a Citizens Advice Bureau adviser while serving a five-year prison sentence has had his contract terminated. The CAB announcement was made the day after the Lancashire Telegraph revealed that convicted conman Philip Pressler, formerly of Higher Whittlestone Farm, Darwen, was being allowed to give advice to members of the public who knew nothing of his past.

Lancashire Telegraph

14 Sep 2006

Crooked solicitor's jail sentence

A CORRUPT solicitor has been jailed for two years after a £300,000 scam was uncovered. Mark Kerruish, 40, massively over-billed clients, some of them dead, while he was the senior partner running Fielding and Co in Chorlton-cum-Hardy and Cheadle Hulme.

IC Cheshire

14 Sep 2006

Crook solicitor stole £70,000 from helpless disabled client

A MAN once seen as a potential future Tory leader in the Lothians has admitted stealing £70,000 from a disabled man. Former Conservative councillor for Prestonfield and Mayfield, Iain Catto, 41, who is also a former solicitor, pretended to care for Francis Fleming after he became partially paralysed. Catto, an elected member from 1990 to 1994, had pretended to be a close friend of Mr Fleming, 59, and volunteered to pay his bills and organise his life. But he was regularly withdrawing sums up to £15,000 a time from his client's accounts to fund his own lavish lifestyle. He even sold some of his victim's shares.

The Scotsman

23 Aug 2006

Lawyer forged contract and then lied to tribunal

Temporarily removed 29 Aug

Bournemouth Echo

14 Aug 2006

Budding lawyer’s £100k bank fraud

Most budding legal eagles have a grasp of what they can possibly get away with within the bounds of the law. But when law student Andrew Curzon received a cheque for more than £100,000 that had been sent to his address by mistake, he did not bank on being caught trying to deposit the money in his own account. Curzon, 19, of Lingfield Road, Wimbledon, wrongly received a Bank of Scotland cheque for £117,533 in the post. It was made out to his elderly neighbour as a payment from a pension fund that had matured. But instead of returning it to its rightful owner, the teenager wrote his name over the pensioner's, went into the Wimbledon Village branch of NatWest and asked staff to put the sum in his bank account. (Start as you mean to carry on. UJ)

This is Hertfordshire

03 Aug 2006

Lawyer claimed he was solicitor

A LAWYER who made a legal blunder faces being struck off unless he removes his own name from the profession's official register, a hearing has heard. Adrian Cole, 63, landed himself in trouble after his name appeared on official notepaper claiming he was a solicitor when he did not have a practicing certificate. An enquiry heard on Tuesday that Mr Cole had not held a valid licence to work as a solicitor since he was suspended for 12 months in 1999 for a number of serious legal errors. But Gerald Lynch, for the Law Society, said that Mr Cole had sent a fax in November 2003 to Eversheds in Cardiff on behalf of a former colleague on paper headed 'Adrian E Cole solicitor'.

East Anglian Daily Press

02 Aug 2006

Oh, really?Solicitors face tough drive over competence

HUNDREDS of secret disciplinary hearings held each year against solicitors are expected to go public, in a drive to rid the profession of poor standards and dishonesty. At the same time, solicitors could face regular “MoT” tests in the shape of competence checks — to ensure, in the vogue words of the Home Secretary, that they are “fit for purpose”..."Last year, of 594 adjudications held after a complaint about a solicitor, the society made 222 decisions to reprimand or severely reprimand 139 solicitors. The more serious cases, where conditions are attached to a solicitor’s practising certificate, are already made public to people who inquire." (It just ain't gonna happen. UJ)

Times Online

01 Aug 2006

Church organ solicitor jailed

A solicitor who played the organ in his local church was jailed for three months on money laundering charges today. Brian Dougan, 49, of Northern Ireland, allowed £66,000 to pass through his client account while carrying out conveyancing work for a convicted criminal. Dougan, who has been asked to stand down from his position as a church elder, did not initially realise the cash came from a criminal source, but continued with the work even when he became suspicious..."Sir Stephen Lander told the Law Society Gazette that a "bent solicitor" was a "heaven-sent opportunity" for money launderers. "There are not a lot of dodgy lawyers in percentage terms, but a significant number are struck off for dishonesty. A bent solicitor is a very important asset to a criminal gang – the client account is a heaven-sent opportunity for money launderers to turn cash into legitimate assets," he said."

Times Online

24 Jul 2006

Shamed solicitor stripped of assets

A SHAMED solicitor who created a fantasy client to fund his luxury lifestyle has been stripped of £426,414 of his assets. Silver-haired Ian Macfarlane, 46, who has been struck off the solicitors' register, used his ill-gotten gains to pay for exotic holidays, school fees for his two children, property investments and his own tax bill. Currently serving a three year and nine month jail sentence, Macfarlane admitted 26 theft offences and asked for a further 137 similar charges to be taken into consideration, involving over £800,000.

Dorset Echo

01 Jul 2006

Solicitor jailed for sale link
A Shrewsbury solicitor has been jailed for 15 months for money laundering after he carried out legal work on the purchase of a house from two drug dealers. Phillip John Griffiths, of Emstrey Lodge, was convicted of turning a blind eye to the purchase of a house in Birmingham by estate agent Leslie Dennis Pattison for £43,000 — a third of the property’s value. A jury at Warwick Crown Court yesterday convicted the 44-year-old solicitor of entering into or becoming involved in a money laundering arrangement. Correction 21 June 2006:Solicitor jailing
"We have been asked to point out that Shrewsbury solicitor Phillip John Griffiths was cleared of entering into or becoming involved in a money laundering arrangement during a recent court case. The 44-year-old, of Emstrey Lodge, was convicted of failing to make a ‘required disclosure’ to the authorities about a house sale when, as a solicitor, he knew or suspected or had reasonable grounds for knowing or suspecting money laundering was taking place. He was jailed for 15 months by Judge Marten Coates following a two-week trial at Warwick Crown Court."

Shropshire Star - link removed.


20 Jun 2006

Solicitor stole from clients

A Solicitor was jailed yesterday for stealing £140,000 from his clients to fund a failing second business. Richard Dawson, 54, put clients of Dawson's Solicitors in "financial hardship" while he poured their money into his new business.

IC Wales

08 Jun 2006

FRAUD: Con pair face ruin

A COUPLE are today facing ruin and the loss of their home after a pair of smiling swindlers stole £90,000 from their business. Engaged couple Tracey Holdsworth (42) and Mark Jackson (50) were facing problems with their electrical firm when they fell for the charm of Michael Brandon, who said he had the financial know-how to turn things around.They little suspected that the conman, and his partner Simon Rutledge, would bleed them dry and leave them in despair. Today, the only consolation for Tracey and Mark, of Dunsberry, Bretton, Peterborough, is that they were not the only victims of the conmen's convincing story of business acumen. They can also take comfort from the fact that glib-talking Brandon, who admitted 16 counts of obtaining £250,000 from his victims by deception has been sent to prison for three and a half years. His cohort, Rutledge, a disbarred solicitor, has been ordered to do 240 hours of community work for his part in profiting from the misery of others.

Peterborough Today

30 May 2006

Town lawyer is struck off

A dishonest Shrewsbury solicitor who pocketed nearly £10,000 of a client’s cash entrusted to him for a house purchase has been struck off. Stephen Morecroft, of Battlefield Road, also forged vendors’ signatures on documents and tried to trick a hospital into handing over confidential records.

Shropshire Star

26 May 2006

Solicitor who stole £1.3m gets 7 years jail

A greedy solicitor who stole nearly £1.3 million from clients' accounts to live a life of luxury was today jailed for seven years. Timothy Miles, 45, a former chairman of his local Round Table, paid off the mortgage on the family home in Uxbridge and then bought himself a luxury flat in Gerrards Cross which he furnished opulently when his marriage broke up. He also bought a Jaguar car. He admitted 13 charges of theft and one of forgery of two wills over a four year period until a routine audit while he was on holiday led to his arrest. Miles, a salaried partner in the Uxbridge firm of Bird and Lovibond which he joined in 1994, earning up to £60,000 a year, dealt with conveyancing, wills and probate, said counsel.


26 May 2006

Solicitor admits money laundering

A solicitor from County Armagh has pleaded guilty to involvement in money laundering at a Liverpool Court. Brian Dougan, 48, from Brootally Road, Milford, admitted using his firm's business account to handle money from a red diesel money laundering scam.


23 May 2006

Solicitor struck off for £350,000 mortgage fraud

A Flitwick solicitor who dishonestly misappropriated more than £350,000 of clients' money to help a crooked property dealer was thrown out of the profession on Tuesday. Linda Collier, 45, of Glebe Avenue, handed over an initial £141,850 entrusted to her by a mortgage company to a businessman who claimed he needed the funds to finance a string of home deals. The client, referred to as Mr B, promised he would pay back the money on Collier's return from a holiday to Luton law firm Churchman Thacker, where she was a partner.

Bedford Today

06 May 2006

Solicitor is guilty of misconduct

A DITHERING solicitor who allowed a house to fall into ruin has been found guilty of professional misconduct. The Scottish Solicitors' Discipline Tribunal heard William Rennie, 53, of Kilmarnock, was asked to deal with the estate of a couple who died just weeks apart, without leaving wills.

Glasgow Evening Times

27 Apr 2006

Misconduct solicitor struck off

A Newton Stewart solicitor has been struck off after being found guilty of 15 counts of professional misconduct. Nicholas McCormick, 47, who traded out of offices at 28 Victoria Street, was found guilty by a Law Society discipline tribunal. It found that he had breached a catalogue of rules and ignored complaints made against him by clients.


27Apr 2006

Clerk used client's cash

A CROOKED solicitors clerk from Banbury paid off £4,000 of customers' debt with cash taken from other clients, a misconduct hearing was told. Elizabeth Gough pretended she had recovered the money owed to the clients in court judgements when in fact she had simply taken it from another account. In one case Gough paid out £1,886 and in another £2,000 was sent to trusting clients using others customer's money, the Solicitors' Disciplinary Tribunal heard. Bosses at Blake Lapthorn Linnell, in Westway, Oxford, put her on extended leave in January 2004 to investigate the cases when they discovered there was a problem.

This is Oxfordshire

21 Apr 2006

Tribunal upholds FSA case against solicitor

The Financial Services and Markets Tribunal has upheld a Financial Services Authority (FSA) case against Allen Phillip Elliott after finding that he is not fit and proper to work in any part of the UK's regulated financial services industry. The Tribunal stated that Mr Elliott's history shows that "he is not able and willing to comply with requirements placed on him by professional rules and obligations" and that he was not open and honest in his dealings with regulators. The Tribunal found that Mr Elliott "poses a risk to the protection of consumers and a risk to the reputation of the market" and it concluded that a Prohibition Order was necessary "in order to protect consumers from risk and … to maintain market confidence." Mr Elliott is not authorised by the FSA, but he operates an unregulated mortgage investment scheme through his company FMD Trustees Plc. He obtains client referrals and introductions from authorised financial advisers who may be unaware of his history. (Follow link, right, for full text)

Financial Services Authority

05 Apr 2006

Solicitor struck off

A solicitor who stole money from the dead and disabled has been kicked out of the legal profession. Nicholas Pounder, 47, plundered the estates of dead clients to pay off a car loan and went on a luxury holiday to Spain on money belonging to a disabled man. The solicitors' disciplinary tribunal in London heard how Pounder, a former partner in David and Snape, Wyndham Street, Bridgend, stole more than £168,000 over six years, creating bogus letters to cover his tracks.

IC Wales

16 Mar 2006

Norfolk solicitor suspended

A Norfolk solicitor who agreed to falsify a lie detector test in order to help a client blow the lid on a steamy love affair was yesterday suspended for two years. Trevor Beckford, 53, of Hall Road, Thurton, near Loddon, was found guilty at a Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal hearing in London of involvement in the bizarre scheme to expose a love cheat, and was warned that any further misconduct would result in him being struck off. (Solicitors also fail lie detector tests. UJ)

Eastern Daily Press

15 Mar 2006

Former solicitor jailed for theft

A former Anglesey solicitor who stole £143,000 from clients has been jailed for two-and-a-half years. Stephen Puleston Williams, 50, from Holyhead, stole the money from clients over a three-year period. He admitted theft and forgery at Chester Crown Court before being sentenced on Tuesday.


28 Feb 2006

Solicitor who smuggled drugs into Barlinnie named

A solicitor who admitted smuggling drugs into Glasgow's Barlinnie prison can now be named. It follows a successful legal challenge by lawyers from media companies including Scottish Television to a High Court ruling that Angela Baillie's name should be kept out of the press. She is now facing a lengthy prison sentence after pleading guilty.

Scottish TV

07 Feb 2006

Lawyer supplied drugs to prisoner

A solicitor has admitted supplying drugs to a Barlinnie Prison inmate. Heroin and diazepam with a street value of more than £1,600 were handed over in a cigarette packet which had been opened and resealed, the court heard.


06 Feb 2006

Top lawyer killed wife in vicious knife attack

A partner at one of Britain’s biggest law firms stabbed his wife to death in a "ferocious" attack just days after she told him she was having an affair, a court heard today. Christopher Lumsden, 52, used a kitchen knife to stab his wife Alison in the neck, face and back as she sat at a dressing table in the bedroom of their home near Altrincham, Cheshire, on the evening of March 16 last year.

Times Online

06 Feb 2006


A DISGRACED solicitor has been struck off after borrowing tens of thousands of pounds from dead clients' estates. A Law Society disciplinary tribunal found Adrian Gerard Donkin, a trusted solicitor for 30 years, had acted dishonestly by misusing money in customers' accounts, as loans for himself.
Donkin, whose three-and-a-quarter acre home in Boldon Lane, Cleadon, is up for sale for £950,000, was also slammed for taking a £25,000 personal loan from a grieving woman too upset to accept inheritance money after the death of her brother.

Sunderland Today

28 Jan 2006

You'll be jailed for theft from clients

A DISGRACED solicitor who plundered more than £143,000 from clients was yesterday warned he faced jail. Stephen Pulston Williams, of Holborn Road, Holyhead, admitted four charges of theft, three of false accounting, and one forgery charge. The 50-year-old was the senior partner in the longstanding law firm of Prothero Williams with offices in Valley, Holyhead and Bangor. He was struck off in 2002, after he admitted using clients' cash for his own use, leaving a £172,000 black hole. The firm, closed down by a legal watchdog, was later taken over.

IC North Wales

25 Jan 2006

Solicitor barred

A solicitor who used his clients’ money when he ran his business from a hut in his garden at Harlow, Essex, was struck off by the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal. Michael Blow, 55, had a £546,000 “black hole” in his accounts. Some of the money will have to be found by the solicitors’ insurance fund.

Times Online

02 Dec 2005

Crooked lawyers ordered to pay up

A SOLICITOR and his law firm must pay £360,000 to 63 investors involved in a boiler room scam the Court of Appeal ruled today. John Martin and Adrian Sam & Co ("ASC"), the former London-based law firm at which Martin was a partner, were found guilty in December 2004 of being involved in an illegal overseas investment firm's 'boiler room' activities in the UK.

This is Money

Financial Services Authority

26 Nov 2005

Lawyer jailed for stealing 6 mln stg from clients

LONDON (Reuters) - A solicitor was jailed for eight years on Thursday for stealing over 6 million pounds from his clients. Michael Fielding, 59, used his position as a partner at law firm Lawrence Graham to fraudulently sign off requests for scores of payments over a 3-year period. "At present, 140 unauthorised withdrawals totalling 6.5 million pounds have been identified," police said after Fielding was sentenced at Southwark Crown Court.


03 Nov 2005

Fugitive City lawyer faces jail

A top City lawyer, who used to advise the Princess Diana Memorial Trust, is to be sentenced this week after admitting stealing at least £6.5m from his clients. Michael Fielding, a former partner at solicitors Lawrence Graham, was a fugitive from justice for more than four years...


31 Oct 2005

Fraudulent solicitor is struck off

A solicitor who was jailed for 28 days after admitting stealing from a charity has been struck off by the Law Society. Christopher Savage was convicted at Lowestoft Magistrate's Court in December after a court heard he had abused his position as treasurer to the Beccles Round Table and Beccles Business Association(BBA) by taking money destined for the James Paget Hospital (JPH) at Gorleston.

Eastern Daily Press

17 Oct 2005

Lawyer jailed for embezzling cash

A solicitor who embezzled more than £100,000 from his Glasgow law firm has been jailed for two years. Calum Blyth, 34, admitted taking the money from the firm's account over two-and-a-half years in the late 1990s. Judge Lord McPhail told the High Court in Edinburgh that cases of embezzling by solicitors damaged public confidence in the legal profession.


16 Sept 2005

Solicitor abused client's child

A solicitor has been jailed for grooming the 10-year-old daughter of a client before abusing her.
Anthony Bare, 48, of Lumb Lane in Droylsden, Gtr Manchester, bought the girl gifts before attacking her twice.


30 Aug 2005

Shady lawyer left us in the cold

J.W. writes:

"I have a problem with the Law Society. I run a wholesale business selling beers, wines and spirits, and after a customer's cheque for £40,000 bounced, we cut off supplies. The customer said new finance was being raised and cash was imminent. We accepted an undertaking from the customer's solicitor that we would be paid in full, so supplies were reinstated. Well, the firm was refinanced, but we never received our cash as promised and we put the firm into liquidation"..

Tony Hetherington replies:

"LET'S name names. The company that owes you money is called Tockheath. When it went bust, you had received £16,500, leaving £23,500 due. And the solicitor who gave the dud promise to pay you is Barry Roberts. Writing on the notepaper of his firm, Roberts & Co of Sheffield, he said: 'As solicitors for and on behalf of Tockheath, we hereby undertake to discharge your outstanding account in the sum of £40,000 from the proceeds of the refinancing operation.' What could be clearer? Roberts was not writing on Tockheath notepaper, he did not sign himself as a director of Tockheath and he wrote as a solicitor, nothing else. But there is more to Roberts than meets the eye. Not long after he made his promise to you, his firm was shut down by the Law Society"... Read the full text, link on right:-

Also by Tony Hetherington: Why Crooks are Laughing

This is Money

30 Aug 2005


A FORMER solicitor faces jail after admitting embezzling £108,000 from clients when his firm plunged into debt.

Glasgow Daily Record

13 Aug 2005

Solicitor struck off after using client fund

A NORTH Yorkshire solicitor has been struck off after taking £20,000 from his firm's accounts to pay his utility bills. A solicitors' tribunal yesterday heard fellow partners at Northallerton firm Jefferson Willan and Co became concerned Roland Heslop-Gill was withdrawing excessive sums every month as salary.

Yorkshire Post

03 Aug 2005

Solicitor jailed for client theft

A solicitor has been jailed for 18 months after he stole £150,000 from two chronically ill patients and from bank accounts of dead clients. Nicholas Pounder, 46, from Porthcawl, south Wales, used the money to pay off credit card debts Swansea Crown Court was told. He admitted 16 charges of theft, two of false accounting, while 71 similar charges were taken into account.


15 Jul 2005

Solicitor jailed for will swindle

A north Devon solicitor who swindled clients out of more than £280,000 has been jailed for three and a half years. Philip Huxtable, 58, from Hiscott near Barnstaple, was found guilty last month of 11 charges of stealing from clients. He tried to cover up his stealing by massively overcharging clients, Bournemouth Crown Court was told. The Freemason, who has since been made bankrupt, used the money to prop up his ailing business, Pitts Tuckers, and to finance a lavish lifestyle.


13 Jul 2005

£2m pension fund fraud solicitor jailed

A SOLICITOR who helped his client plunder more than £2m from the pension fund of hundreds of Scottish workers was jailed for two years yesterday. Carsten Iversen, 44, played a "vital role" in reassuring trustees that a complex cash transfer scheme was above board.

The Herald

01 Jul 2005

Solicitor pleads guilty to theft

A solicitor who stole nearly £350,000 from clients and the Inland Revenue has been jailed for four years for theft. Christopher McChrystal, 52, was caught when the Law Society carried out an inspection at his sole practice on De Montfort Street in Leicester.


29 Jun 2005

Internet Adoption Solicitor Struck Off

A solicitor who sparked controversy by adopting twin girls through the internet today lost his High Court battle against being struck off for breaching strict financial rules. Alan Kilshaw’s wife, Judith, appeared in person before two senior judges to challenge the disciplinary ruling. She argued that, as Mr Kilshaw, 50, had not been accused of dishonesty, he should be subjected to a lesser penalty, such as suspension.

The Scotsman

20 Jun 2005

Solicitor is barred for helping fraudster

A SOLICITOR who served a three-year jail sentence for helping a fraudster steal £425,000 has been struck off by the Law Society. Susan Davies, 56, was sucked into an advance fee scam aimed at a Korean developer hoping to raise the money to provide a designer golf course at Eyehurst Farm, Kingswood. Davies allowed the mastermind of the fraud, Andreas Kitallides, to withdraw the money from her client account after falling for his flattery. But, while he avoided charges by fleeing to South Africa, Davies was forced to plead guilty to conspiracy to defraud.

IC Surrey Online

07 Jun 2005

Thousands sought from con lawyer

A former lawyer who swindled clients out of almost £700,000 has been ordered to pay back £100,000.
John Kennedy Forster, 55, from Stranraer, has been serving a six-and-a-half year prison sentence for embezzling £667,000.


04 Jun 2005

Bigamous lawyer stole from client

A bigamous solicitor has been jailed for six months for stealing thousands of pounds from a dead client's account to pay for her marriage. Marylena Shuti, 29, wrote cheques for £6,000 and £2,000 from the estate of Clifford Parkinson, and paid them into her account, Luton Crown Court heard.


04 Jun 2005

Lawyer stole £825,000 from taxman

A solicitor stole more than £825,000 from the Inland Revenue by paying money into a bogus bank account he had set up in the name of "Ian Revue", a court heard yesterday. Ian Macfarlane lived in an "idyllic" country house worth £750,000, drove a Mercedes, educated his children at an independent prep school and used the proceeds of his crime "like a cashpoint".Macfarlane, 44, a partner at Traill & Co, in Blandford, Dorset,...


27 Apr 2005

Law firm's payout to 'betrayed' ex-miners

A LAW firm has been forced to pay out over £100,000 to 13 former Yorkshire miners after handling their claims for compensation negligently. Some of the claims against Doncaster solicitors Shaw & Co were prompted by a Yorkshire Post investigation into the Yorkshire Compensation Recovery Service, which referred clients to the firm.

Yorkshire Post

28 Apr 2005

Immigrant visa scam lawyer jailed
A north London lawyer who made thousands of pounds charging immigrants for bogus visas has been jailed for nine years at Croydon Crown Court. Chris Christodoulides, from Enfield, used forged documents to help hundreds of Romanian immigrants gain visas.The 38-year-old admitted charges of conspiracy to defraud the Home Office and facilitate illegal entry to the UK.

This is London

Times Online

25 Apr 2005

Barrister is disbarred after calling his instructing solicitor a 'nigger'

An Oxford-educated lawyer has become the first barrister to be disbarred for racism after he called a senior black solicitor a "nigger" and suggested he returned to Ghana. Joseph Sykes made his comments in a letter to a London solicitor, Philip Glah,...


23 Apr 2005

Jailed Solicitor 'Betrayed Grieving Clients'

Police who investigated a solicitor jailed for six years after stealing more than £1 million from the estates of dead clients today described his crimes as a “betrayal of trust of staggering proportions”.
John Ingham, 60, was jailed at Leeds Crown Court yesterday after admitting 19 counts of theft from accounts held by his firm in Otley, West Yorkshire.

The Scotsman

24 Mar 2005

Sacked Judge Gets Three Year Law Ban

A former district judge who was sacked for being drunk was today banned from practising law for three years over serious financial irregularities and ordered to pay £15,000 costs. David Messenger, 50, of Scalby Road, Scarborough, North Yorkshire, used a client’s money taken from his law firm Messengers for his own personal benefit.

The Scotsman

22 Mar 2005

Crime-Crusader Lawyer Jailed for Swindling Bosses

A greedy barrister hired to root out corruption in the travel industry was jailed for four-and-a-half years today after swindling his bosses out of nearly £1 million. Ricardo Nardi, 36, was nicknamed “Mr Clean” after being taken on as legal services chief at the Association of British Travel Agents.

The Scotsman

16 Mar 2005

Lawyer spent clients’ funds

A SOLICITOR who used his clients’ money to buy a holiday home and pay staff wages, has been barred from practising on his own for 10 years. Daniel Hurley, a solicitor who owns a law firm in Galway city, was censured by the High Court after an investigation into his accounts by the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal, an independent body that deals with complaints against lawyers.

Sunday Times - Ireland

13 Mar 2005

Solicitor David Andrew Gatherer struck off.

The SDT ordered that the respondent, of 22 Meadow Lane, East Herrington, Sunderland SR3 3RG, who at all material times had been in practice on his own account, should be struck off the Roll for unbefitting conduct in that, on 23 September 2003, he had been tried and convicted on indictment of conspiracy to defraud at Newcastle Crown Court, and on 16 January 2004 had been sentenced to 18 months’ imprisonment. The SDT found that the conviction of a solicitor for a criminal offence involving dishonesty flew in the face of the fundamental requirement that a member of the profession be a person of the highest integrity, probity and trustworthiness.

Law Society Gazette

11 Mar 2005

Solicitor admits theft of £900,000 from clients

John Richard Ingham was struck off by the Law Society last month after the Solicitors' Disciplinary Tribunal heard he had plundered money from accounts for years. Yesterday Ingham, 60, who was a partner in the firm of Barret Chamberlain, in Manor Square, Otley, appeared at Leeds Crown Court and pleaded guilty to 19 charges of theft totalling more than £980,000 from the beneficiaries of different clients prior to June 2003.

Yorkshire Post

09 Mar 2005

Crooked solicitor is shamed

A CROOKED solicitor who milked £43,000 from his firm when his bosses failed to give him a promised pay rise was struck off on Tuesday.Panikkos Panayi, 39, vowed to "get even" with his partners at Heckford Norton in Letchworth GC when they decided against the increase.

Herts 24

03 Mar 2005

Bent solicitor thrown out

A DISHONEST Wirral solicitor used £10,000 entrusted to him by a client to pay his own salary, a disciplinary hearing was told yesterday. Gordon Kingan, 50, was thrown out of the profession after the tribunal heard how he also used a cheque drawn on his client's account to pay his mortgage.

IC Liverpool

16 Feb 2005

Solicitor sacked after BBC sting

This item has been temporarily removed pending enquiries about the broken link. UJ has a cached version of the original article, which featured here:


BBC (link broken)

14 Feb 2005

Corruption Probe Lawyer Facing Jail for Fraud

A barrister employed to unearth corruption in the British travel industry was behind bars today after admitting defrauding the organisation that hired him. Ricardo Nardi, 36, who was the head of legal services at the Association of British Travel Agents, siphoned off nearly £1 million from its coffers during a seven-year betrayal of trust.

The Scotsman

11 Feb 2005

Solicitors undertook irreconcilable duties

"A man may have a duty on one side and an interest on another. A solicitor who puts himself in that position takes upon himself a grievous responsibility. A solicitor may have a duty on one side and a duty on the other, namely, a duty to his client as solicitor on the one side and a duty to his beneficiaries on the other; but if he chooses to put himself in that position it does not lie in his mouth to say to the client 'I have not discharged that which the law says is my duty towards you, my client, because I owe a duty to the beneficiaries on the other side'. The answer is that if a solicitor involves himself in that dilemma it is his own fault. He ought before putting himself in that position to inform the client of his conflicting duties, and either obtain from that client an agreement that he should not perform his full duties of disclosure or say - which would be much better - 'I cannot accept this business.' I think it would be the worst thing to say that a solicitor can escape from the obligations, imposed upon him as solicitor, of disclosure if he can prove that it is not a case of duty on one side and of interest on the other, but a case of duty on both sides and therefore impossible to perform."

In this case the poor soul had to wait FIFTEEN years before even getting a sniff at justice. UJ.

House of Lords


05 Feb 2005

Legal worker stole to pay off debts

A PROBATE manager for a Suffolk solicitors' firm who stole £19,000 from clients' estates to pay off gambling debts has been jailed for 18 months. Father-of-three Gary Beales used bank cards given to him for safekeeping to withdraw money from cash points and even bought himself a car with £7,000 taken from another estate, Ipswich Crown Court heard yesterday.

East Anglian Daily Times

02 Feb 2005

Tribunal told law firm kept cash for office use

SEVEN solicitors were accused yesterday of misusing huge sums of clients' money to try to keep their business afloat. It was claimed the partners in Hull firm Carrick Carr Wright kept stamp duty and land registry money in office accounts to reduce their overdraft. Cashier Kevin Rooney even gave himself a bonus to help pay for a holiday villa, the Solicitors' Disciplinary Tribunal heard.

Yorkshire Post


25 Jan 2005

Prufrock: Nadir's solicitor is struck off

Peter Krivinskas, long-standing adviser and lawyer to Nadir, has been struck off as a solicitor. The Law Society has confirmed his removal from its roll of solicitors.

Sunday Times

23 Jan 2005

Legal clerk disappears before tribunal

A SOLICITORS' clerk has been barred from the profession after writing a reference for a relative who had never worked for the firm. David Kirunda, 48, also took a van-load of 325 files from one practice without the permission of the boss and moonlighted for another company.

IC South London

20 Jan 2005

Solicitor admits theft from law firm

A SOUTH Wales solicitor has admitted stealing more than £110,000 from his law firm. Nicholas Pounder, 46, admitted 16 offences of theft and two of false accounting at Swansea crown court yesterday. (12 Jan)

IC Wales

14 Jan 2005

Barrister disbarred for juggling murder cases

A barrister has been disbarred for trying to represent two alleged killers in separate trials at the same time, in crown courts 130 miles apart. To compound the strain on Colin William Campbell, his personal life was "in turmoil", his defence counsel later told a Bar disciplinary tribunal.


10 Jan 2005

Solicitor jailed for charity fraud

A disgraced solicitor was last night starting a 28-day jail sentence after admitting stealing money destined for charity by defrauding two business groups. Christopher Savage's solicitor said the 44-year-old father of two had suffered from "rogue file syndrome" after taking around £1300 from the Beccles Business Association (BBA) and Beccles Round Table.

Eastern Daily Press

06 Jan 2005

Wills theft solicitor is jailed

A solicitor who stole £630,000 to pay compensation he failed to secure for his clients has been jailed.
Donald Halling, 54, of Central Avenue, South Shields, stole the money from the wills of other deceased clients. He pleaded guilty to 12 forgery and seven theft charges and to attempting to pervert the course of justice.


21 Dec 2004

Crooked lawyer struck off after dodgy plane deal

A crooked lawyer acted as a "cloak of respectability" for businessmen involved in a multi-million pound cargo planes deal. Ian Hutchinson, 56, of Trinity Road, Paddington, allowed his firm's headed paper to
be used to approach airlines and moneylenders on behalf of a group of companies, without having carried out the proper checks.

Hampstead and Highgate Express

17 Dec 2004

Crooked solicitor struck off

A CROOKED solicitor who helped evil "Snakehead" gangsters to smuggle hundreds of Chinese asylum into the country was struck off last Tuesday. Titus Miranda, 58, ran his firm as a "factory of lies" coaching migrants on how to convince the authorities that they were the victims of religious persecution.

Harrow Times

10 Dec 2004

Solicitor admits $1.4m fraud

A TASMANIAN solicitor is behind bars tonight after pleading guilty to defrauding investors of $1.4 million. Haydn James Dodge, of Sorell, was remanded in custody after pleading guilty in the Supreme Court of Tasmania to three counts of conspiracy to defraud investors.

Daily Telegraph

10 Dec 2004

Law Soc faces £2m bill for complaints handling

The cost to the Law Society of meeting revised complaints handling targets is likely to exceed £2m, it has emerged.

The Lawyer

07 Dec 2004

Dishonest solicitor struck off

LITTLEHAMPTON solicitor Robin Parslow has been struck off, for failing to keep financial records of his practice and lying to investigators.

Littlehampton Today

09 Dec 2004

Fury over legal aid for wealthy lawyer

A WEALTHY city lawyer who admitted embezzling £20,000 from clients has caused outrage after it was revealed he was given taxpayers’ cash during his court case. Critics have slammed a decision to pay legal aid to Richard McAnulty, 46, despite the fact he lives in a £400,000 house, drives a Mercedes, runs a successful chain of sandwich shops and has two children at a fee-paying school.

The Scotsman

31 Oct 2004

"Solicitor masterminded massive legal aid fraud

A flamboyant lawyer best known for representing murderer Tracie Andrews has served a jail sentence for masterminding a multi-million Legal Aid fraud, it can be revealed today. Solicitor Timothy Robinson, now 60, was convicted of conspiring to systematically defraud the Legal Aid system of huge sums of cash over a period of almost six years." (Independent)

"More than 20 staff from Robinsons Solicitors - which had offices in Cheltenham, Gloucester, Bristol and Swindon - have been convicted of defrauding the Legal Aid system. On Friday, as the final trial collapsed, reporting restrictions were lifted, and the full extent of the crimes could at last be revealed." (BBC)

An account of the case is also published today by the Gloucestershire Constabulary in an information pack “Operation Alison”. Contact Chelmsford (01242) 276071.


The Scotsman


Serious Fraud Office


Operation Alison Media Release

29 Oct 2004

Solicitors stole from bankrupt company

A solicitors' watchdog has welcomed a ruling to strike off two solicitors who stole £53,000 from a bankrupt client. Peter Wilson, aged 57, and Richard Lloyd, aged 56, have been thrown out of their profession after admitting dishonesty.

IC Coventry

28 Oct 2004


A DISGRACED lawyer accused of fleecing cash has gone bankrupt owing up to £750,000. Douglas Criggie, 47, was investigated by the fraud squad after allegations that he swiped clients' money at his Edinburgh practice.

Sunday Mail

24 Oct 2004

Barrister Tax Cheat Put Behind Bars

INLAND REVENUE PROSECUTIONS News Release (TP29/04) issued by the Government News Network on 22 October 2004. Richard Deighton (58) a barrister of 146 Bognor Road, Chichester was sentenced to 9 months jail today at Maidstone Crown Court.

The Scotsman

23 Oct 2004

Solicitor fined over widow's cheque

ONE of Yorkshire's leading lawyers was fined £10,000 yesterday after an £80,000 insurance cheque was put into the office account instead of being paid to a widow. A Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal heard that Max Gold Partnership, of Silver Street, Hull, operated a life insurance scheme that paid out in the event of the death of an employee. When worker James Evans died in 2001, his wife Mary should have received £80,000.

Yorkshire Post

23 Oct 2004

A law unto themselves

The Law Society wants us to love our solicitors, but the number of complaints means it is a difficult case to prove. 'My hero, my solicitor' is the unlikely slogan for a poster campaign designed to impress upon an uncaring British public just how wonderful lawyers are. 'Hero' certainly isn't the word that David Smith would choose to sum up his feelings towards his lawyer.


17 Oct 2004

A reward for failure

Seven staff blamed for helping to land a £7.5 million compensation bill on Birmingham housing department have been sacked. The seven had been responsible for examining council houses where tenants were suing the council for allowing the properties to fall into disrepair. Three of the seven have now found jobs with the same legal firms which pocketed millions by winning compensation for tenants, it emerged today.

IC Birmingham

16 Oct 2004

Conman solicitor is jailed

A LAWYER who conned clients out of more than £19,000 was jailed for 18 months yesterday. Edinburgh sheriff Douglas Allan told 46-year old Richard McAnulty a custodial sentence was the only appropriate one.

Daily record

13 Oct 2004

Solicitor 'failed to voice suspicions'

A Belfast solicitor has been jailed for six months for failing to tell police about his suspicions that a client was laundering drug money. Gavin David McCartan, 46, from Ardenlee Avenue,...


04 Oct 2004

Solicitor in court on fraud charge.

A CALDERDALE solicitor was among five people to appear in court accused of taking part in a housing scam. Norman Hopwood (77), of Bramley Lane, Hipperholme, and Maria Kitson, (50), of Parkwood Street, Keighley, are charged along with Mehfooz Hussain, (26), Shakeela Bibi, (26) and Mahmood Hussain, (31), all of Fairfield Road, Idle, Bradford, with conspiracy to defraud.

Halifax Today

01 Oct 2004

Lawyer faces prison over embezzling from clients

A LAWYER is facing jail after admitting embezzling money from his clients. Richard McAnulty, 46, has admitted embezzling £19,484 from the accounts of a number of his clients - including almost £7000 from the estate of two who were deceased.

Edinburgh Evening News

27 Sep 2004

Lawyers in asbestos case agreed to destroy evidence

A leading London law firm agreed a deal to destroy documents which could be used by workers to claim compensation for asbestos-related diseases, The Independent has learnt.


27 Sep 2004


A BANKRUPT lawyer who fleeced investors out of their life-savings while he racked up debts of £1million is back to his old tricks. Rogue solicitor Paul Anderson, 42, left dozens of people in ruins after enticing them to invest in his get-rich-quick mortgage business.

Sunday Mail

26 Sep 2004

Aston Pride paid £100,000 to solicitors

The former Aston Pride regeneration partnership paid more than £100,000 without authorisation to a firm of Birmingham solicitors despite the efforts of a whistleblower to expose what was happening.

IC Birmingham

25 Sep 2004

Solicitor struck off for role in fraud scheme.

Ian Wilfred Dodd had improperly assisted and/or encouraged clients and/or third parties to invest funds in a financial scheme(s) which he ought to have known was, or had the hallmarks of, an advance fee fraud.

Law Society Gazette

24 Sep 2004

Solicitor struck off for 'sham' practice

A ROSSENDALE solicitor has been struck off for "improper and unacceptable" behaviour.
Michael Tracey, 46, of Meadows Avenue, Haslingden, was one of three lawyers who set up a "sham" partnership to get round conditions imposed on a colleague by the Law Society.

This is Lancashire

17 Sept 2004

Lawyers Accused of 'Running Sham Practice'

Three lawyers faced being struck off today over accusations of involvement in running a sham practice.
Among them is Aurangzeb Iqbal, who represented a dozen defendants following the Bradford riots in the mid-1990s and who was involved with Bradford City Football Club.

The Scotsman

16 Sep 2004

Irish solicitor ‘made false claims to attract investor’

A SOLICITOR attempted to introduce investments into a billion dollar oil-drilling scheme by falsely claiming $10 million was being held by his employers, a disciplinary tribunal heard yesterday. Philip Merrills-Dearn, aged 35, of Kilcock, Co Kildare, formed a company for carrying out the work but used his solicitor employers’ offices and headed notepaper to add credibility, it was claimed.

Updated 27 May 2005: "...the SDT was not satisfied to the high standard required that he had been dishonest." Law Society Gazette

Irish Examiner

15 Sep 2004

Lawyers face curbs over 'profits before ethics'

New rules for solicitors as client charges spiral to £9bn


31 Aug 2004

Lawyers warned over profiteering

LAWYERS were today facing a crackdown on client charges to counter fears of profiteering. The Law Society is drawing up a new code of conduct for solicitors after figures showing record profits for top firms.

This is London

31 Aug 2004

Struck off for dodgy claims

A PRESTWICH solicitor has been suspended for six months and his former partner struck off following a disciplinary tribunal held over allegations their firm had been at the centre of a £750,000 legal aid scam. Declan Adams, aged 43, of Leach Mews,...

Asian News UK

31 Aug 2004

Fraud lawyer jailed for 6 years

A Perth lawyer who defrauded finance companies of more than $13 million has been jailed for six years. Rohan George Skea received the six-year sentence after District Court chief judge Antoinette Kennedy said he had cooperated fully with police.

ABC News Online

27 Aug 2004


An Accounts manager for a city law firm who stole nearly £60,000 from his employers and spent it on cars and holidays has been jailed for two years. Andrew Erskine, aged 39, ripped off Redland-based Bevans solicitors by transferring funds belonging to the firm and its clients into his own bank account, Bristol Crown Court heard.

This is Bristol

25 Aug 2004

Breach of trust: lawyers struck off

Three NSW solicitors have been formally stripped of their licence to practise over trust fund irregularities worth almost $3 million. Stephen Gill misappropriated almost $1.9 million between 1994 and 2002 as he worked in the Newcastle region, while Kevin Minotti spent about $750,000 belonging to clients of his Bondi Junction practice. Another solicitor, Malcolm Hansen, lost his right to practise yesterday because a clerk at his Queanbeyan firm had misappropriated more than $310,000

Sydney Morning Herald

25 Aug 2004

Lawyer stole for lifestyle

A successful young lawyer stole more than $80,000 from a leading city law firm to fund an extravagant lifestyle that included a city apartment and party drugs. Donna-Marie Field was 25 years old and earning $90,000 a year as a senior associate at Blake Dawson Waldron when she was caught claiming reimbursements for false expenses.

The Age

25 Aug 2004

Solicitor jailed for plundering

A SOLICITOR from near Solihull who plundered more than £400,000 from clients' accounts was jailed for four-and-a-half years at Birmingham Crown Court last Thursday. Michael Lee, 63, of Pund Field, Wootton Wawen, took the cash...

IC Solihull

20 Aug 2004

BRIEFS ENCOUNTERS Lawyers banned in £144M legal aid probe

TWO lawyers were banned from every court in Scotland and several others are under investigation in a multi-million pound legal aid probe. The Scottish Legal Aid Board (SLAB) slapped a four-week ban on freelancer Iain McPeake.

Sunday Mail

15 Aug 2004

Four years for thieving lawyer

A former solicitor who plundered more than £400,000 from clients' accounts was jailed for four-and-a-half years yesterday. Michael Lee (63), of Pund Field, Wootton Wawen, Warwickshire, took the cash over a period of two to three years while principal of Michael Lee & Co, based in Coventry Road, Small Heath, Birmingham.

IC Birmingham

14 Aug 2004

'Incompetent' solicitor suspended over errors

AN INCOMPETENT solicitor who made a series of blunders involving clients' money has been suspended from the profession indefinitely. Simon Cannon, 44, ended up closing down his firm after encountering severe financial and personal problems.

IC Surreyonline

13 Aug 2004

Debtors circle law man's home

A DISGRACED solicitor's home is finally set to go on the market to pay back money he owes to former clients.

Belfast Telegraph

03 Aug 2004

Solicitor took eight years to pay charity its cash

A SOLICITOR took so long to deal with a charity donation that his client died before the matter was resolved, a tribunal heard.

IC SurreyOnline

29 Jun 2004

News update on Solicitor David Gatherer

A Law Society spokesman said after the trail (sic): "Gatherer has badly let down his profession. The public is entitled to the highest standards of integrity from a solicitor. (Hmm...UJ)

IC Newcastle

19 Jun  2004

Solicitor lied about 'cashback' scheme, tribunal hears.

A SOLICITOR lied to another lawyer when he helped organise an astonishing £2.5 million 'cashback' scheme, a tribunal heard on Thursday. Richard Caplan, 51, claimed he had checked that the offer was backed by insurers when it wasn't.

Harrow Times

17 Jun  2004

Asylum case lawyers milk legal aid.

Abuse by solicitors is revealed as so widespread and costly that the government plans to launch its own service. Jamie Wilson and Alan Travis detail the extent of overcharging and exploitation.


16 Jun  2004

"Mr Clean" barrister accused of £1 million fraud.

A barrister appointed by the Association of British Travel Agents to root out corruption in the travel industry has been charged with, errr, fraud. Defrauding his employers of £1 million, to be exact. Riccardo Nardi is now looking at an all-inclusive package deal of 23 criminal charges...

Roll on Friday

04 Jun  2004

Solicitor stole clients' cash

A SUNDERLAND solicitor has been struck-off after stealing £114,355 from clients, a tribunal heard.
Duncan Wall, who recently worked for Harding, Swinburne, Jackson & Co solicitors in Frederick Street, Sunderland, made 167 improper transactions from clients accounts while running his own practice, under his own name, in Coronation Street, South Shields.

Sunderland Today

04 Jun 2004

Dossier of shame tells of evil web.

A SECRET dossier linked to a murdered police informer names criminals, corrupt police and a lawyer in a string of drug, bribery and murder plots. A PROMINENT solicitor acted as a bagman to bribe detectives to reduce charges against two alleged drug dealers linked to Hodson.

The Australian

01 Jun  2004

Fast-lane lawyer on more fraud charges.

High-flying Peppermint Grove lawyer Rohan Skea will be charged tomorrow with another 23 counts of fraud over more than $7 million he allegedly swindled out of several finance companies.

The West Australian

26 May  2004

Theft solicitor barred from job.

A Shropshire solicitor convicted of theft and forgery has been struck off by a disciplinary panel. Andrew Nicholls, who was a partner at the firm Dakin Nicholls of Shifnal, was given a three-month suspended jail term by Telford magistrates last year.


24 May 2004

Ban for 'crusader' who gave hope to mis-selling victims

A solicitor who gave endowment mortgage victims hopes of a legal route to compensation has been banned from practicing for a year. Joseph Aaron, from Ilford, Essex ...Joseph Aaron says he was "properly regulated by the Law Society" and was not obliged to reveal his disciplinary record.


23 May 2004

Solicitor is struck off for dishonesty.

A NORTH Wales solicitor and former Bangor City chairman was struck off yesterday amid allegations of dishonesty. John Ross-Jones, 59, of Dolwyddelan, Conwy, was alleged to have misused clients' money and not paid it into proper accounts.

IC North Wales

21 May 2004

Third Lawyer Charged with Laundering Drug Money.

A third solicitor has been charged with laundering drugs cash, police revealed today.
John Greenwood, 48, of Manchester Road, near Colne, Lancashire, was charged yesterday with conspiracy to money launder following a National Crime Squad investigation. John Greenwood cleared 26 July 2005

The Scotsman

21 May 2004

Albury solicitor jailed.

Mr Peter Lyle Sharp, a former solicitor from Albury, New South Wales (NSW), was sentenced today in the NSW District Court to five years jail with a non-parole period of three years in relation to 39 charges brought by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). Mr Sharp had earlier pleaded guilty to 16 charges under the Corporations Act of making improper use of his position as the director of Tietyens Investments Pty Ltd to gain an advantage directly or indirectly for himself, and 23 charges under the Crimes Act of New South Wales, of concurring in the making of false statements with intent to obtain a financial advantage.

Australian SIC

18 May 2004

Ex-Banker's Scam Left Investors 'High and Dry'

A former banker masterminded an “elaborate” international charade that fed on “human frailties”, dealt in deceit and made millions, a court heard today. In the dock with Martin Gibbins, 41, of Robins Nest Hill, Little Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire, are Imdab Ullah, a 35-year-old financial consultant from Aberdeen Place, St John’s Wood, north west London, and solicitors Michael Wilson-Smith, 59, who lives in Dane Hill, Haywards Heath, West Sussex, Peter Barnett, 48, of Birchanger Lane, Bishops Stortford, Hertfordshire, and Minesh Ruparelia, 38, from Broxburn Close, Leicester.

The Scotsman

12 May 2004

Police raid solicitors' office.

Officers from the Scottish Drugs Enforcement Agency targeted the offices of Chris Sayer solicitors in connection with a crackdown on career criminal Alexander Donnelly.

The Scotsman

12 May 2004

Ledward victims face legal bills.

Thirty-seven women who claimed they were sexually assaulted by the disgraced gynaecologist Rodney Ledward have been left with large legal bills. Mistakes by solicitor Jane Loveday resulted in their High Court bid for compensation collapsing in January.


11 May 2004

Solicitor branded incompetent by High Court judge.

Abbot Ozuzu was reported to the Legal Services Commission by a High Court judge because his work was "not competent".

Evening Standard

10 May 2004

Crooked lawyer's appeal rejected.

A Solicitor jailed for eight years for crimes including fleecing more than £300,000 from clients has been denied leave to appeal against his sentence....all cases of theft by solicitors resulted in considerable damage to public confidence in the legal system but this was a particularly bad case.

This is Derbyshire

09 May 2004

Jail for solicitor who lied.

A city solicitor has been jailed for lying to the police.
Harjit Sangha, 39, was sentenced to 18 months in prison for trying to pervert the course of justice.

Leicester Mercury

08 May 2004

Lawyer in cash probe suspended.

A LAWYER who admitted a string of charges was suspended indefinitely at a disciplinary hearing.
Solicitor Geoffrey Stuart Lawton, 63, of Crowther Road, Heckmondwike, practised on his own under the name of GS Lawton and Co, of North Lane, Headingley, Leeds.

IC Huddersfield

07 May 2004

Solicitor struck off for swindling clients.

A solicitor who stole a million pounds by swindling clients out of money from compensation claims has been struck off. Dmytro Torkoniak lied to the victims of accidents and illness about the amount of compensation they'd been awarded.

ITV Central

07 May 2004

Jail for solicitor who robbed clients.

A YORKSHIRE solicitor was beginning a two-and-a-half year jail sentence today for plundering more than £114,000 from client accounts. Timothy Farrant, 52, siphoned the money over nine years while a partner at Pinkney Grunwells in Scarborough.

Leeds Today

01 May 2004

Judge Halts Asylum Case to Report 'Incompetent' Solicitors.

A High Court judge dramatically halted a hearing today and reported an “incompetent” firm of solicitors dealing with an asylum seeker to the body which administers the legal aid system.
The extraordinary action was taken by Mr Justice Goldring after he criticised Abbot and Co, based in Woolwich New Road, south east London,...

The Scotsman

28 Apr 2004

Solicitors' accounts a mess.

TWO Liverpool solicitors who allowed their busy firm's accounts to become a "complete mess" were fined a total of £8,000 yesterday.
Action was taken against Michael Ellenbogen, 43, and Andrew James, 52, after a Law Society inspector found the books would not balance.

IC Liverpool

28 Apr 2004

Hearing told of four-year delay in dealing with will.

A CHESHIRE solicitor who delayed properly dealing with a will for four years was fined £3,000 yesterday.
David Sims, 63, broke strict legal rules by failing to locate the dead person's assets or apply for probate to tie up the estate.

IC Liverpool

28 Apr 2004

Lawyers arrested in cash probe.

Five people, including two solicitors and an accountant, have been arrested in connection with money laundering and deception offences.


26 Apr 2004

Action over double-charging lawyers.

Scores of solicitors have been removed from an approved Government list after failing to respond to calls to refund overpayments to miners involved in health claims, it has been revealed.

I.C. Essex

25 Apr 2004

Crooked city solicitor is struck off.

A CROOKED Sheffield lawyer who pocketed hundreds of pounds of homebuyers' cash has been struck off the solicitors' roll. Paul Bateman, aged 35, a former partner at city centre firm Cunnington's on Trippet Lane, may now face a police investigation into his dishonesty.

Sheffield Today

22 Apr 2004

Disgraced lawyer new council head.

THE wealthiest Aboriginal land council in NSW has appointed as its chief executive disgraced barrister Paul Coe, who was paid thousands of dollars by the same organisation for legal advice although he had been struck off.

The Australian

22 Apr 2004

White & Case lawyer imprisoned for fraud

A former White & Case lawyer has been sent to a boot camp in Buffalo after stealing over $111,000 from the firm. Jennifer Hampton pleaded guilty to first degree fraud and second degree grand larceny...

The Lawyer (com)

20 Apr 2004

Lawyer accused of legal aid fraud.

A LAWYER exposed in a Manchester Evening News investigation has been accused of 10 cases of legal aid fraud and of using a false university degree certificate when applying to be a solicitor. Liaqat Malik, 46,...

Manchester Online

16 Apr 2004

'Dog's dinner' costs solicitor his job.

A bungling solicitor who admitted making "a dog's dinner" of a road accident case, leaving three injured women with nominal damages of £1 each, was struck off yesterday. Kevin Nutt, 43,...


16 Apr 2004

Solicitor Bailed on Drugs Cash Laundering Charges

A solicitor and a legal representative appeared in court today charged with laundering drugs cash.
Basil Dearing was before Preston magistrates charged with four matters relating to the transfer of the proceeds of drug trafficking. Basil Dearing cleared 26 July 2005


15 Apr 2004

Wait goes on for Lawyer's Victims.

Most of the victims of a Derby solicitor who conned clients and taxpayers out of nearly £1m are still waiting for their money back - more than two years after his arrest.

This Is Derbyshire

14 Apr 2004

Solicitor struck off for misconduct

Former Sutherland lawyer Mark Sutherland-Fisher, North Cadboll House, North Cadboll, Fearn, has been struck off the Roll of Solicitors in Scotland, it emerged this week.

Northern Times

02 Apr 2004

Solicitors charged after inquiry

A former president of Burnley Law Society has been accused of money laundering and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice. Basil Dearing (Now cleared), 60, of Lower Chapel Lane, Grindleton, Lancashire, was charged on Tuesday as part of a National Crime Squad investigation. Solicitor, 53-year-old John Broughton of Pasture Drive in Colne, was charged with the same offences. Eight other people have been charged with similar offences. John Broughton cleared 26 July 2005


01 Apr 2004

Probe into law firm.

"A report into the circumstances surrounding the forced closure of Gidley and Company, of Stainland Road, should go before the Law Society next month."

Huddersfield Daily Examiner

23 Mar 2004

Profit built on lies.

A crooked Birmingham solicitor involved in a series of fraudulent mortgage deals which made a fortune for his client has been kicked out of the profession.
City lawyer Colin Barr, 47, failed to disclose vital information to building societies as they lent money for a series of dubious property purchases.

IC Birmingham

18 Mar 2004

Conman lawyer jailed for fraud

A lawyer who admitted defrauding clients out of nearly £700,000 has been jailed for six-and-a-half years.


18 Mar 2004

Solicitor in court for theft of clients' cash.

"Tim Farrant, 52, a former partner in Scarborough law firm Grunwells, yesterday appeared at York Crown Court to plead guilty to nine charges of theft."

Yorkshire post

16 Mar 2004

Solicitor in fraud probe.

Mystery surrounds the identity of a Teifi Valley solicitor under investigation over an alleged fraud.

Carmarthen Journal

11 Mar 2004

Solicitor In Cash Probe

AN Ulster solicitor is at the centre of a probe by the Northern Ireland Law Society, it can be revealed today. (Link broken as at July 2006)

IC Northern Ireland

11 Mar 2004

Lawyer stole from dead

A solicitor has been jailed for four years for stealing more than £278,000 from dead clients to fund his comfortable lifestyle.


28 Feb 2004

Solicitor Suspected of Smuggling Illegal Immigrants into the Country

The lawyer was stopped last night by detectives at Dover, with four Romanian nationals in his car returning from France.

The Scotsman

28 Feb 2004

Ex-con lawyer struck off

A CONVICTED murderer who qualified as a solicitor has been kicked out of the profession for trying to kill his wife. Incredibly, Law Society officials were convinced he was safe to work as a lawyer following his release on life licence after he knifed a 17-year-old to death on a dance floor. (Well, the Law Society's not fussy about who it lets in, is it? UJ)

IC South London

27 Feb 2004

Sentencing of Former Solicitor Deferred Again

A former solicitor who stole £667,000 from his clients will have to wait a further three weeks to learn his fate, a court ruled today.

The Scotsman

26 Feb 2004

He kept swiping clients' money

FOR seven years, a crooked lawyer kept pocketing his clients' money. When he was caught last year, he had taken $1.68 million. (A nod to Asian reporting)

Straits Times

26 Feb 2004

Barrister 'jailed for judge insult'


26 Feb 2004

Lawyer jailed after £250,000 loan-fraud scam

A LAWYER who carried out loan frauds worth £250,000 to bail out his struggling legal practice was jailed for more than two years yesterday.


26 Feb 2004

£38m scam solicitor struck off

Paul Winter Morris (55), received a five-year prison term after he dishonestly siphoned some £8 million through his law firm’s client accounts.

HM Customs & Excise

25 Feb 2004

High court orders inquiry into law firm. .. "enormous concern" by the conduct of a solicitor, Jane Loveday, who ran up a legal aid bill of up to £2m representing women claiming assaults by the struck-off gynaecologist Rodney Ledward.


19 Feb 2004

Sentencing of Solicitor Deferred Again


14 Feb 2004

Solicitor used clients’ cash on loans David Holder ran up debts of almost £700,000...

Hendon & Finchley Times

06 Feb 2004

Crooked solicitor paid tax bill with client's money

A CROOKED solicitor who settled her tax bill with money due to a bereaved family has been thrown out of the profession.

Henley Standard

19 Jan 2004

House-scam lawyer to be struck off

"Crooked solicitor David Gatherer will be struck off after being jailed for cheating an elderly widow in a property scam."

Evening Chronicle

19 Jan 2004

I was ruined by Shipman 'lawyer', says ex-solicitor

A former solicitor has alleged that the fraudster Giovanni Di Stefano ruined his practice


19 Jan 2004

Ex-lawyer sentenced for fraud (with a nod to Scotland)


14 Dec 2003

A solicitor pleaded guilty this week to stealing over half a million pounds from his clients.

Roll on Friday

12 Dec 2003

A solicitor who employed a disgraced former lawyer at his practice without the permission of his governing body was suspended for six and a half months.

Camberley News & Mail   and


09 Nov 2003

Solicitor suspended over fraud. A Shropshire solicitor who moved thousands of pounds from clients' accounts to his own firm has been suspended for five years.

BBC News

11 Sept 2003

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A London solicitor, Andrew Warren, has pleaded guilty to attempted racketeering in connection with an international stock fraud conspiracy that operated in New York and Britain, prosecutors said Thursday. Warren is a former partner of London solicitors Talbot, Greggy & Co


01 July 2003

A North Devon solicitor, Philip Huxtable, has been struck off for overcharging clients by more than £100,000.

BBC News

01 July 2003

A high flying solicitor, Adrian Jackman, who swindled nearly £2m from clients to spend on his mistress and foreign investments, has been struck off.

BBC News

01 July 2003

The North Yorkshire solicitor, Jeremy Cave, found guilty of stealing almost £155,000 from the estates of his dead clients has been struck off the Solicitors' roll.

BBC News

01 July 2003

A former solicitor, Shirley Harrison, has been sentenced to three years in prison for taking more than £400,000 left to people in wills.

BBC News

29 June 2003

Solicitors' offices raided. Drug trafficking and money laundering in Lancashire and West Yorkshire. The Law Society claims to have been helping the police in the investigations leading to the raids.

BBC News

26 June 2003

Solicitor jailed for theft

A struggling Sussex solicitor who plundered the estate of a dead couple has been jailed for nine months. Jill Radford, 54 and a mother of six, cashed cheques totalling £45,505 over 18 months from money left in the wills of Mr and Mrs Duggan while working as executor to their estate.

The Argus

21 Jun 2003

Crooked lawyer struck off

A CROOKED solicitor who raided clients' bank accounts while his business partner was seriously ill has been struck off. Pamela Higab was battling cancer when officials launched a probe into Philip Pressler. But Higab was brought before a tribunal as a result of Pressler's transfers. She accepted two breaches of the profession's rules over the scandal at Hindle, Son and Cooper Solicitors, Darwen, but was cleared of all blame after it was accepted she could not have known Pressler was on the fiddle. Ian Ryan, for the Law Society, said Pressler transferred £87,255 from clients' accounts into his own account on four occasions between February 17, 1998, and May 5, 2001.

Lancashire Evening Telegraph

21 May 2003

Jail term for crooked lawyer

A lawyer who embezzled money from his clients to fund his extravagant lifestyle has been jailed for 11 years. Alastair Hall, from Perthshire, stole about £500,000 worth of cash and shares, often from elderly clients and used the money to pay for shooting and fishing weekends.


25 Mar 2003

Solicitor stole up to £326,000 in aid fraud

A CORRUPT solicitor was jailed for five years yesterday for a "long-standing, skilful and deliberate" fraud of the legal aid fund. John Tate submitted thousands of bogus green forms claiming fees for work he said he had carried out on behalf of clients. Newcastle Crown Court heard that the 50-year-old submitted 8,000 bogus claims between 1996 and 1999 using names of clients he met at job clubs some years earlier.

Northern Echo

26 Feb 2003

Solicitor jailed over cheques deal

A LAWYER'S career lay in ruins today after he was jailed for 18 months for his part in a scam involving £1.2m worth of stolen travellers cheques. Yasin Mohamed, 29, helped dispose of some of the cheques stolen in a raid at Heathrow Airport. Mohamed, who co-ordinated deals from his solicitor's practice in Oldham, was arrested after selling £15,000 of stolen cheques to an undercover police officer.

Manchester News

5 Jul 2002

Solicitor stole over four years

A DISHONEST solicitor, who helped himself to £19,000 from clients after they sent in the money to pay off medical bills, has been struck off. Paul Rowlands, aged 35, pocketed the cash over a four-year period while working at law firms.

This is Lancashire

01 Jun 2002

Solicitor struck off for using clients' money

A PENARTH solicitor has been struck off after using £12,000 from his firm's client account. Nigel Richardson, 54, of Park Road, even made a credit card payment of £1,500 out of the money, a solicitors' disciplinary tribunal heard last Thursday.

This is Penarth

17 Jan 2002

Solicitor stole from aunt, 91

A MILLIONAIRE solicitor who stole more than £73,000 from his 91-year-old aunt so he could buy a boat was jailed for six months yesterday. The money was meant to pay her rest home fees. But the court was told that David Benham, 59, sold two shares and used the proceeds to buy the £35,000 boat.


11 Dec 2001

Money Laundering Solicitor Struck Off

A Finchley solicitor who was jailed for seven years in February this year for money laundering was struck off by a disciplinary committee last week. Louis Glatt, 54, of Chessington Avenue, was found guilty of conspiring to launder almost £2.3million from Southgate crime boss Ellis Martin's bootleg tobacco and alcohol trade, through his Mayfair firm between October 1994 and January 1997

This is Local London

10 Oct 2001

Solicitor on the run is struck off

A solicitor stole more than £250,000 from clients to pay off his debts before fleeing abroad, a tribunal heard. David Rawlings, 55, used the money to pay for his children's public school fees and his spiralling tax bill.

This is Eastbourne

29 Sept 2001

Solicitor jailed for stealing clients' money

A SOLICITOR from Harpenden was jailed for three years and nine months on Friday, August 31, for stealing a third of a million pounds of clients' money. Myles McNulty, 37, of Granby Avenue, bought expensive cars and paid off the loans and credit cards he used to fund his lifestyle with his clients' cash Luton Crown Court was told.

This is Local London

04 Sept 2001

Danbury: Solicitor struck off in cash muddle

A solicitor has been struck off at a disciplinary hearing. John Bacon, 57, appeared stunned when told of the decision at the Solicitors' Disciplinary Tribunal in central London.

This is Essex

28 Jul 2001

Embezzling solicitor jailed
A solicitor who was struck off after embezzling more than £63,000 has been jailed for five and a half years. Donald Pirie, 41, took money from clients for more than three years to keep his debt-ridden practice in Cowdenbeath going.


02 Aug 2000

Solicitor found guilty of misconduct

A SOLICITOR who acted for clients against a firm of which he was a director has been struck off after being found guilty of professional misconduct. Philip Redfern, aged 51, of Pendle View, Brockhall Village, Old Langho, near Blackburn, who used to work in Farnworth and Bury, had also breached undertakings and delayed in dealing with conveyancing matters.

This is Lancashire

13 Jul 2000

Southend: Solicitor is struck off

A solicitor has been struck off for a catalogue of errors including borrowing £20,000 from an elderly woman and not paying it back. A disciplinary tribunal also heard Anthony Thipthorpe, 60, failed to safeguard a family's interests during a probate dispute which allegedly cost them £50,000.

This is Essex

03 Dec 1999

Solicitor jailed for stealing clients' funds

Michael James Palmer sentenced to 3 years imprisonment
The former senior partner of a leading firm of West End solicitors, Michael James Palmer, ("Palmer") was sentenced today at the Central Criminal Court, Old Bailey, in respect of 17 offences involving conspiracy to defraud, theft, forgery and false accounting. Palmer pleaded guilty to these offences, which arose out of his management of deceased clients' estates involving a sum of over £250,000, at a previous hearing a month ago on 19 March 1999.

Serious Fraud Office

19 Apr 1999

Solicitor Struck Off After Forging Will

A FORMER Greenwich solicitor has been struck off after forging a client's will to make a profit.
Peter Casey Wells, who worked from offices in Greenwich High Road, was found guilty of offences "so serious that it could only have one consequence" at a tribunal last week.

Enfield Independent

05 Dec 1998

Lawyer lashed by judge

A SOLICITOR faces a further investigation after she was fined £1,500 for being in contempt of court by a High Court judge. Lawyer Miss Bushra Anwar was accused of "disgraceful behaviour" by the judge, Mr Justice Sachs, who ordered that a copy of his ruling be sent to the Office for the Supervision of Solicitors. The Blackburn-based lawyer - the first Asian woman in East Lancashire to have her own legal practice - was also ordered to pay damages of £1,000 to Mr Mohammed Afzal for loss of his reputation, as well as a further £57 for damages to his property and part of his legal fees.Sitting at the High Court in Manchester, Mr Sachs told Miss Anwar that it would be "outrageous" if she was to "escape the consequences of her disgraceful behaviour".

This is Lancashire

26 Sept 1996





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