A barrister who sent hostile emails to solicitors and made a false statement to a judge has been suspended for six months.
Peter Wareing, called in 2004, was sanctioned for his conduct during a 2015 public access case, when he sent hostile emails to the other side’s solicitors, made a false statement to solicitors in relation to disclosure, and made a false statement to an employment judge during a case management hearing.
According to a judgment published by the Bar Tribunals & Adjudication Service, Wareing sent ‘unnecessarily hostile and antagonistic’ emails to a respondent’s legal team. He also told a solicitor that he had received a disclosure list four days later than he had done, in order to ‘give us some time’.
In the same period, Wareing told an employment judge that his client had only been able to draft a statement in ‘bullet point form’. In reality, the client had sent Wareing a 27-page statement the previous month.
The tribunal found that Wareing had breached several barristers’ core duties including failing to observe his duty to the court in the administration of justice, failing to act in the best interests of his client, failing to act with honesty and integrity, failing to provide a competent standard of work and service to his client, and acting in a way which was likely to diminish the trust and confidence which the public places in him or the barrister profession.
The tribunal also found that the barrister had undertaken public access work between May and September 2015 while he was not authorised to do so.
Wareing was suspended for six months and ordered to pay £2,000 costs. Before he can return to direct access practice he must complete an approved public access training course.
Commenting on the order, a BSB spokesperson said: ‘The tribunal’s decision to suspend Mr Wareing for six months serves as a reminder to all barristers about the need to adhere to the standards of conduct laid out in the BSB Handbook.’
The tribunal's decision is open to appeal.