Litigation Discliplinary Tribunals 13/06/95

JOHN HENRY JANES, 46, admitted 1977, practised as Howard Janes, Kingsbridge, Devon, struck off and ordered to pay £881 costs. Allegations substantiated he wrongly drew and used client money for own purposes, held himself out as practising solicitor in investment business when he had no authority to do so, failed to deliver accountants report on time, failed to keep properly written books. Tribunal was told that Janes' letterhead wrongly held out that he was regulated by the Law Society in the conduct of investment business; also an investigation accountant's probe into his books revealed payments from client account not allocated to client ledger. Minimum cash shortage of £16,565 identified on client account and 15 claims totalling £28,071 pending against compensation fund at the time of hearing. Tribunal said the shortage on client account and use of client money for personal purposes was a matter of utmost seriousness and demonstrated dishonesty on Janes' part.

DAVID MAUN, solicitors clerk with Messrs Fraser Southwell, Wisbech, at material time, banned from working for any further solicitors without written consent from Law Society. Tribunal told he misappropriated client cheques. Seven clients involved and total misappropriation appeared to be £10,930. He had also borrowed £7,500 from a client of his firm. In his submissions to tribunal Maun said he had worked within the profession since 1964 and, while his behaviour had never given cause for concern in the past,

he had taken the money at a time he was under great personal pressure. He said he had since repaid it and neither his employers nor his clients had suffered any loss and there had been no claims made against the indemnity fund.

JOHN RAYMOND RINGROSE, 54, admitted 1964, practising at material times as John Ringrose & Co, Halifax, fined £2,000 and ordered to pay £1,026 costs. Allegations substantiated he failed to discharge proper costs of professional agents employed by him in course of his practice, paid into or alternatively retained in his office account, money received from Legal Aid Board in respect of disbursements unpaid by him. Tribunal told complaint was made to Law Society by proprietor of a Halifax inquiry agency who claimed he had been employed by Ringrose but that fees totalling £557 had remained unpaid. Enquiries revealed that some of those fees had been advanced by the Legal Aid Board. Tribunal said that, while Ringrose had not acted dishonestly, they took a serious view of solicitors who paid money into office account which was properly destined for credit of client account.