Litigation Disciplinary Tribunals 26/5/98

Vasantha Karalliedde, solicitor's clerk, 58, of Alleyn Park, SE21, employed by Mangalagama & Co, Edgware, and responsible for conduct of professional business of firm's clients, including conduct of litigation matters, banned from 6 January 1998 from further employment by a solicitor without written permission of Law Society and ordered to pay costs of £1,920. Allegations substantiated that he falsely described himself as a solicitor and failed in his duty to carry out terms of his retainer with due care, skill, proper diligence and promptness, and failed to keep clients properly informed.

Helen Mary Kehoe, 46, admitted 1992, having qualified as a solicitor in Ireland in 1976, working at material times as unadmitted conveyancing assistant on part-time basis and then full-time as partner at Lance Kent & Co, Chesham, struck off and ordered to pay costs of £4,093. Allegation substantiated that she used clients' money for personal matters. Tribunal told she left her job in 1997 and was no longer employed in the profession. Tribunal said Kehoe had turned to client account to solve her problems. It said the amounts involved were small and she had made some reparation and intended to repay all monies. But while it had sympathy for her, it was unable to overlook dishonest misappropriation of clients' money and falsification of firm's books of account.

Gurmit Singh Randhawa, 45, admitted 1985, practising at material time in partnership as Fisher McCarthy Randhawa, struck off and ordered to pay costs of £959. Allegations substantiated that he had been convicted of an offence of dishonesty and had behaved in a manner which was unbefitting a solicitor. He had been involved in conspiring with others to defraud lending institutions with regard to advances of money by them to one or other of the co-conspirators for the mortgage or remortgage, respectively, of houses. On 6 January 1997 he was convicted at Cardiff Crown Court on three counts of conspiracy to defraud and one of theft, and sentenced to suspended prison terms and fines.