SDT: Jacquelina Olivia Johns (aka Jacquelina Olivia Laverick)
- Application 10831-2011
- Admitted 2003
- Hearings 15 December 2011
- Reasons 29 December 2011
The SDT granted the applicant leave to amend the application, so as to seek a direction prohibiting the restoration of the respondent’s name to the roll, except by order of the SDT and to refer to the respondent throughout as a former solicitor, her name having been removed from the roll by the applicant on 2 June 2010.
The SDT ordered that the respondent should be prohibited from having her name restored to the roll except by order of the SDT, and that the prohibition order should be stayed for a period of 28 days from 15 December 2011 to enable the respondent to seek a rehearing if so advised.
The respondent had breached rules 1.02 and 1.06 of the Solicitors Code of Conduct 2007 as she had failed to act with integrity and had behaved in a way that was likely to diminish the trust the public placed in her or the profession by virtue of her conviction upon indictment of 10 counts of theft and two counts of converting criminal property at Lincoln Crown Court on 22 October 2010. When sentencing the respondent, the judge had referred to difficulties in her personal life which she had encountered between 2001 and 2007.
He had made it clear that those difficulties did not excuse or justify what the respondent had done. She had committed very substantial acts of dishonesty and clear breaches of trust. She had stolen large sums of money from vulnerable clients of whom she had taken advantage. If the respondent’s name had still been on the roll, the SDT would have had no hesitation in striking it off. However, it had been made aware by the applicant that her name had been removed from the roll on 2 June 2010, as part of an administrative process of the Solicitors Regulation Authority. The SDT therefore proposed to make a direction prohibiting the restoration of her name to the roll, except by its order under section 47(2)(g) of the Solicitors Act 1974 (as amended).
The SDT was alert to the fact that that direction was not the same in nature as the application as originally pleaded. Leave to amend had been granted at the substantive hearing from which the respondent was absent. The SDT therefore intended to grant a stay of the prohibition order for a period of 28 days from 15 December 2011 to give the respondent a reasonable period of time in which to make an application to the SDT for a rehearing if so advised.
The respondent was ordered to pay costs to be assessed if not agreed.