Decisions filed recently with the Law Society (which may be subject to appeal)

Adeleke Ajibola
Application 11812-2018
Admitted 2008
Hearing 18 December 2018
Reasons 14 January 2019

The SDT ordered that the respondent should pay a fine of £5,000. 

In August 2014, the respondent had completed a proposal form for insurance, stating untruthfully that he had not carried out any conveyancing in the previous 10 years, thereby breaching principles 2 and 6 of the SRA Principles 2011. 

In July 2015, he had completed a proposal form for insurance with a breakdown of work which did not include any allocation for conveyancing, thereby breaching principles 2 and 6 .

For the year 2014/15, he had filed a practising certificate renewal form, including a request to be authorised as a sole practitioner, with a breakdown of work which did not include any allocation for conveyancing, thereby breaching principles 2, 6 and 7. 

On 28 July 2016, his accountant filed a qualified report for the year ended 31 October 2015, in breach of rule 32A.1 of the SRA Accounts Rules 2011, which requires a solicitor to file a qualified report within six months of the end of the accounting period. The respondent had thereby breached principle 7. 

There had been no loss to anyone, but there had been a failure to understand the requirements of the regulator. The reputation of the profession was negatively affected by a solicitor failing properly to manage professional regulatory obligations.

The respondent had made admissions but only on the day of the hearing. He had not demonstrated genuine insight. 

The seriousness of his misconduct was such that the appropriate sanction was a financial penalty. 

The respondent was ordered to pay costs of £7,000. 

Adam Kemeny
Application 11845-2018
Admitted 2016
Hearing 10 December 2018
Reasons 8 January 2019

The SDT ordered that the respondent should be struck off the roll. 

By deliberately failing to pay rail fares worth approximately £650 between July and October 2017, the respondent had breached principles 2 and 6 of the SRA Principles 2011. He had acted dishonestly.

The respondent had referred to, but had not relied on, his financial circumstances so his motive was unclear, although at the material time he had been concerned that fares would eat into his savings. While he had debts he also had money in the bank but he had chosen not to pay. He had taken a varying approach to how much he paid according to whether the train was fully occupied or not. 

Dishonesty was proved. The misconduct had involved the commission of a criminal offence, although no charges had been brought. The misconduct was deliberate, calculated and repeated over a period of time. 

The respondent had made good the loss to the train operator, albeit after he had been caught. The SDT was not impressed by his statement that the misconduct would otherwise only have continued for a short period because of his personal plans, rather than because he thought what he was doing was wrong.

Strike-off in cases of dishonesty would be the appropriate sanction absent exceptional circumstances. No case had been advanced for exceptional circumstances and the SDT had found none.

The respondent was ordered to pay costs of £3,082. 

Babatunde Adegboyega Taiwo
Application 11836-2019
Admitted 2001
Hearing 10 December 2018
Reasons 18 January 2019 

The SDT ordered that the respondent be struck off the roll. 

On 26 January 2016, he had presented a travel card to a revenue inspector, which he had altered, thereby attempting to mislead the inspector that it was valid, in breach of principles 2 and 6 of the SRA Principles 2011. He had acted dishonestly. 

On 27 January 2016, he had presented a staff travel card to a revenue inspector that could only be used for leisure journeys when commuting from work, thereby attempting to mislead the inspector that it was valid, in breach of principles 2 and 6. He had acted dishonestly. 

On 27 January 2016, a revenue inspector confiscated a season ticket from the respondent on which he had caused or allowed the date to be altered from 16 June 2015 to 16 June 2016 in breach of principles 2 and 6. 

The respondent’s misconduct had harmed the reputation of the profession. There were aggravating factors. 

He had not advanced a case for exceptional circumstances, none were found, and he had not established there were mitigating circumstances. 

The respondent was ordered to pay costs of £4,400. 

Jirehouse, Jirehouse Partners LLP and Jirehouse Trustees Ltd

On 1 May 2019 the adjudication panel resolved to intervene into the practices of Stephen David Jones at Jirehouse, Jirehouse Partners LLP and Jirehouse Trustees Ltd, at 7 John Street, London WC1N 2ES.

The grounds for intervention into Jones were:

  • There was reason to suspect dishonesty in connection with his practices at Jirehouse, Jirehouse Partners LLP and Jirehouse Trustees Ltd; and
  • Jones had failed to comply with the SRA Principles 2011 and the SRA Code of Conduct 2011, rules made under sections 31 and 32 of the Solicitors Act 1974.
  • The grounds for intervention into Jirehouse, Jirehouse Partners LLP and Jirehouse Trustees Ltd were:
  • There was reason to suspect dishonesty by Jones, the sole manager of Jirehouse, Jirehouse Partners LLP and Jirehouse Trustees Ltd in connection with their business; and
  • Jones, the sole manager of Jirehouse, Jirehouse Partners LLP and Jirehouse Trustees Ltd had failed to comply with the SRA Principles 2011 and the SRA Code of Conduct 2011, which are rules applicable to him made under section 9 of the Administration of Justice Act 1985.

The SRA’s appointed agent is James Dunn of Devonshires Solicitors LLP, 30 Finsbury Circus, London EC2M 7DT, tel: 0207 065 1830, email: interventon-team@devonshires.co.uk. The first date of attendance was Friday 3 May 2019.

Jones’ current practising certificate was suspended with immediate effect.