A Birmingham public access barrister who claims to be the victim of a conspiracy involving his regulator and the courts has been forbidden from issuing any new proceedings.
Mr Justice Hickinbottom made a two-year civil restraint order after Tariq Rehman had failed in his fourth attempt to appeal a fourth disciplinary decision against him.
Hickinbottom had already thrown out claims by the head of Kings Court Chambers in May as ‘totally without merit’.
Rehman returned to the High Court last month to appeal two decisions of the Disciplinary Tribunal of the Inns of Court, which the judge again rejected.
The Bar Standards Board and Legal Ombudsman, both the subject of complaints from Rehman, each submitted that the court should make a civil restraint order against him.
Hickinbottom said he approached the task with ‘something of a heavy heart’ given Rehman’s status as a member of the bar, but insisted barristers do not have a ‘privileged position’.
‘They, more than members of the general public who have no legal training and no professional responsibilities towards the courts, should be sensitively aware of the need to restrain litigants from wasting the increasingly precious time and resources of the justice system,’ he added.
The judge said it was almost certain Rehman would continue to issue and pursue meritless claims and appeals to the detriment of the justice system.
He proposed an order banning Rehman for two years from issuing any new proceedings against the BSB, LeO or any other party to the four claims thrown out, unless he has permission from a master of the administrative court or, on appeal, a judge of the High Court.
‘It will be a contempt of court for Mr Rehman to issue any claim, appeal or application falling within the scope of the order; and, if any such is issued without that permission, it will be automatically dismissed.’
Rehman, who was called to the bar in 2000, had failed to overturn two findings of professional misconduct.
These had proved he falsely alleged a solicitor had forged a date, and that he failed to ensure fees and ombudsman fines were paid.
The court heard Rehman was in the process of making an application to the Supreme Court on the basis that a judge in a previous ruling was party to a conspiracy against him.
That apparent conspiracy extended to Hickinbottom himself, as well as the BSB and the Disciplinary Tribunal. The judge said there was ‘no evidence’ to support any of these suggestions.