Christopher Charles Edward Hayes

  • Application 11514-2016
  • Admitted 1991
  • Hearing 10-14 July 2017
  • Reasons 13 September 2017

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

The respondent had permitted his firm to use money which had been provided by a public body to fund the provision of legal services under a contract between the respondent and his client for purposes that were not authorised by that contract, knowing or suspecting that the purposes were not so authorised, in breach of paragraphs 1(a) and (d) of the Solicitors Practice Rules 1990, and of rules 1.02 and 1.06 of the Solicitors Code of Conduct 2007. In respect of one of those purposes he had acted dishonestly.

The respondent was clearly held in very high regard by senior and well-respected members of both legal professions. The likelihood of further misconduct arising was low. The respondent had been dealing with a manipulative fraudster.

However as a result of his misconduct the firm had acquired substantial sums of public money to which it was not entitled, some of it dishonestly and some of it the result of a lack of integrity.

While the circumstances referred to above were undoubtedly difficult circumstances, they were not exceptional.

The respondent was ordered to pay costs of £86,792.