• Application 11550-2016
• Admitted 1994
• Hearing 18 January 2017
• Reasons 2 February 2017
The SDT ordered that the respondent should be struck off the roll.
Between January 2013 and January 2015, the respondent had knowingly prepared and signed costs claim forms (Forms LF1 and/or AF1) bearing incorrect dates for submission to the Legal Services Commission or Legal Aid Agency. He had thereby breached principles 2 and 6 of the SRA Principles 2011, and had acted dishonestly.
Between November 2011 and January 2015, the respondent had created and sent correspondence which provided untrue information to the Legal Services Commission or Legal Aid Agency, to support claims for payment submitted outside the time frame permitted by the firm’s legal aid standard crime contract. He had thereby breached principles 2 and 6, and had acted dishonestly.
The present case was one in which allegations of dishonesty had been admitted and found proved. Unless exceptional circumstances were found, the normal penalty would be a striking-off order.
While there were exceptional circumstances in the case, there was nothing so exceptional (in accordance with the case law) that would justify any lesser sanction than striking off the roll.
The respondent was ordered to pay costs of £7,342.