• Application 11332-2015
• Admitted 2004
• Hearing 7 December 2016
• Reasons 10 January 2017
The SDT ordered that the respondent should be struck off the roll.
On 8 July 2016 at Manchester Crown Court the respondent had been convicted of fraud and sentenced to three years’ imprisonment (later reduced on appeal to two years). She had thereby breached principles 1, 2 and 6 of the SRA Principles 2011.
[Five allegations made against the respondent in a rule 5(2) statement dated 13 January 2015, four of which were put as allegations of dishonesty, were ordered to be left on the file.]
The respondent had pleaded guilty to fraud, a criminal offence involving dishonesty. Her misconduct had been deliberate, calculated, repeated and had continued over a period of time. The respondent had concealed her wrongdoing and had only pleaded guilty at a late stage. Those were all aggravating factors.
The only mitigating factor was that the respondent had shown some insight, albeit at quite a late stage, when she had entered a guilty plea.
Although the allegation itself was not one of dishonesty, fraud was an offence involving dishonesty. Given that, suspension would not appropriately reflect the seriousness of the misconduct.
Unless there were exceptional circumstances the appropriate sanction was to strike the respondent’s name off the roll. There were no such circumstances.
The respondent was ordered to pay costs of £21,864.