A high-profile criminal defence solicitor is seeking to have a referral to the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal over allegations of financial mismanagement dismissed.

The tribunal is today hearing an abuse of process application brought by Karen Todner over the Solicitors Regulation Authority’s decision to prosecute her.

The SRA announced in July that it had decided to refer Todner to the tribunal.

The regulator alleged that when she was at Kaim Todner Solicitors Limited, Todner: caused or allowed sums received for unpaid professional disbursements to be retained in the firm’s office account for an excessive period and failed to cause the sums to be returned to the client; caused or allowed cash shortages to exist on the firm’s client account; and failed to comply with her obligations as the firm’s compliance officer for finance and administration.

The allegations have not been proven.

Todner is representing herself at today’s abuse of process hearing. The SRA is being represented by Andrew Tabachnik QC.