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See the LSG 30th May 2017, case of Oonagh Grant banned in 2011 by the SRA from working in the legal profession after stealing from the law firm she worked for. Much good that did. She changed her name by deed poll, got another position doing conveyancing work and stole £28K. By the time an audit discovered that, she'd stolen £223,950 from another firm. She was released on bail on condition she didn’t work for a law firm. Again a toothless measure because she went to work for yet another law firm. She stole well over £500K in total. At around the time of that article I asked the Law Society if it kept a register of banned persons, and my recollection is that they said they didn’t.

My point is that Solicitors should be given assistance to tackle fraud and at the moment as far as I can see we are given none. The so-called guidance is littered with example but then says of course the client or prospective client may still be genuine. I am still waiting for a reply to an email to the Law Society about property fraud saying that basically firms of Solicitors have almost no effective means of weeding out impostors unless the Solicitors personally know the client or prospective client. But in the Mishcon situation, buyers' Solicitors are entirely helpless when it is another firm's client who is the fraudster.

My email calls for practical assistance such as the sort of checks carried out by the Land Registry in the Mishcon case but only after the fraud had taken place. Why shouldn't Solicitors be able to call on the Land Registry, a publicly funded body, to help us with cases we are concerned about BEFORE they go ahead.

Because of Solicitors' hopelessly vulnerable position, my email also calls for a mutual fund in cases of property fraud to support Solicitors who are not to blame . It isn't fair for firms of Solicitors to go under, as many would, when they haven't done anything wrong.

I'm not saying we shouldn't be vigilant but with identity theft on the part of another Solicitor's client, we don’t have ANY means of checking out the seller.

Further it would appear that we also don’t have any means of establishing whether a fee earner of another firm may have been banned from legal work!

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