Litigation Disciplinary Tribunals 13/05/97

John Anthony Snailham Griffiths, 54, admitted 1970, practising as Griffiths Jones, Carnforth, Lancashire, struck off and ordered to pay £1,020 costs. Allegations substantiated he wrongly drew and misappropriated client money and used it for his own purposes, failed to exercise proper supervision over staff and deliberately misled investigation accountant. Tribunal also ordered that Andrew James Cross, Griffiths' bookkeeper and legal clerk, be banned from working for any further solicitors without written consent from the Law Society. Allegations substantiated that he misappropriated client funds and used them for his own purposes.

Paul Bernard Sylvester, 51, admitted 1985, practising at material times as PB Sylvester & Co, London SE27, fined £3,500 and ordered to pay £2,373 costs. Allegations substantiated he failed to comply with professional undertakings, failed to pay funds into client account received in respect of undisbursed liabilities, wrongly withdrew client account money and used it for purposes of other clients and himself, unreasonably delayed professional business and failed to deliver costs bill. Tribunal said Sylvester had been misguided and had misdirected himself but had not been guilty of any dishonesty.

John Roy Chester, 60, admitted 1962, practising at material times in partnership with Chester & Simmerson, Sheff-ield, suspended for 12 months and ordered to pay £2,208 costs. Order stayed pending appeal. Allegations substantiated he failed to act in best interest of client; failed to adhere to solicitors' proper standard of work; failed to carry out terms of retainer with care, skill and proper diligence; acted in breach of his duty to advise client on availability of legal aid; failed with reasonable expedition to tax his costs in a legally aided matter; wrongly drew a private bill against a legally aided client, reimbursing himself from the client's money; and failed or failed with reasonable expedition to reply to correspondence and enquiry from Solicitor's Complaints Bureau.