A solicitor formerly with Deloitte has been cleared of wrongdoing after a two-day tribunal hearing. The Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal also refused the regulator's application for costs. 

Jassen Venkatasamy, admitted in 2018, was charged last May by the Solicitors Regulation Authority with kissing the complainant on the lips at a social event organised by the Big Four professional services firm. The incident was alleged to have occured at the Waldorf Hotel in London in 2022.

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The tribunal declined the SRA's application for £22,000

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Venkatasamy submitted to the SDT that the incident was a momentary and inadvertent kiss which was entirely innocent, when he had intended to give a peck on the cheek to someone to say goodbye. 

The tribunal found the allegation of misconduct not proved and dismissed the case. The full written reasons will be published in around seven weeks.

Following the tribunal decision, the SRA applied for more than £22,000 in costs, arguing that the case had been properly brought. But in another example of the tribunal declining to require a cleared solicitor to pay for the case against them, no costs order was made.

Following the hearing, Venkatasamy said: ‘I am pleased with the SDT’s decision. The decision reached was fair in all circumstances. The investigatory process was extremely challenging mentally. I am grateful to my solicitor advocate, Jonathan Goodwin, and his persuasive and cogent advocacy in advancing my case. I look forward to resuming my career in law, which I remain hugely passionate about.’