Setting the record straight on arrest

I would like the opportunity to set my arrest for "possession with intent to supply drugs", as reported in The Lawyer, 7 July, in context.

I had, as an act of kindness, taken to Wandsworth prison a bag of clothing from my client's mother. I told the prison staff what it was and invited them to search it. A prison officer then showed me a small, unwrapped lump of what may well be cannabis. I understand that the value of the substance would be in the region of £5.

If I am ever charged with this matter (which I very strongly doubt), I will have an opportunity to clear my name. In the meantime, I am glad to have received a flood of letters from those who know me expressing complete confidence in my integrity.

It would be wrong to leap to any conclusion as to who might have been the source of these drugs. However, the issue appears to be diverting attention from the real issue, which is brutality.

My firm is central to a very high-profile investigation of brutality and attempts to pervert the course of justice by prison officers at another prison. Our clients at that prison are now being urged to change to a different firm since (it is said) my firm has now been wholly discredited.

It would be a sorry state of affairs if any lawyer dealing with a contentious matter could be bounced off a case on an allegation of this nature. Fellow lawyers beware!

Jane Hickman, partner,

Hickman & Rose, London