A solicitor who head-butted a litigant in person inside a High Court building has been struck off the roll. A spokesperson for the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal said Philip Saunders was struck off yesterday and ordered to pay costs of £4,611.
Last year, the Gazette reported that Saunders had been handed an 18-month sentence, suspended for two years, for the attack on Mohammad Reza Ghadami inside the Rolls Building. He was found guilty earlier in the year of occasioning actual bodily harm.
During sentencing, Inner London Crown Court heard that the force of the ‘deliberate and serious’ blow gave Ghadami a fractured nose requiring surgery.
CCTV footage shows Saunders leaning back before striking Ghadami, whose son plays Kush in BBC drama EastEnders, with his forehead.
Saunders, 69, a partner at London firm Saunders Bearman, had been embroiled in a bitter multi-million-pound property dispute with Ghadami and others. He was not acting in his capacity as a solicitor in the case while Ghadami was a litigant in person. The conveyancing specialist worked as a solicitor for more than 40 years.
Representing Saunders, David Nathan QC said Ghadami had been ‘provoking’ Saunders causing the solicitor to ‘snap’ in a manner that was ‘totally out of his character’.