Litigation Disciplinary Tribunals 04/07/95

WILLIAM RAYMOND HAYNES, admitted 1981, practised as Haynes & Co, London SW12, struck off and ordered to pay £1,525 costs. Allegations substantiated he failed to cooperate with Solicitors Indemnity Fund or its agent in order to enable notified claim in respect of which indemnity was provided to be dealt with appropriately, failed to comply with directions from Solicitors Complaints Bureau, was guilty of unreasonable delay in conduct of professional business, failed to reply to letters from Solicitors Complaints Bureau, Indemnity Fund and others. Tribunal told complaints all concerned "sheer inactivity" of Haynes. Haynes told tribunal incidents complained of arose after deterioration of a partnership arrangement. He said that as result of a dispute with his partner he had been uncertain from day to day where his office was going to be. Files had been removed from his office and some were misplaced. Tribunal said Haynes, who was fined £2,000 by it in 1990 and £5,000 in 1993 for mishandling client funds, among other things, had shown a total abdication of his responsibilities. His conduct, although not dishonest, had put the Complaints Bureau in an "intolerable position". He appeared not to have learned from his lessons in the past and the tribunal felt no further latitude could be shown.

ANDREW PETER MAIDEN, admitted 1983, practised with Moore Maiden and Co, Sutton Coldfield, and later Moore Manton, struck off. Allegations substantiated he drew client money in breach of accounting rules and failed to comply with professional undertakings. Tribunal told he was involved in a fraudulent property scheme in which money went round and round with nobody acquiring title to properties. Evidence was of a "gigantic fraud" in which none of the property transactions had been real. Law Society investigations accountant said partners with Maiden's firm had given 15 undertakings from February to April 1991, in respect of payment of sums totalling £2,689,000 relating to the scheme. Maiden claimed he had only given 12 of those undertakings, but they would have amounted to £1.3 million. In his submissions Maiden said none of the clients involved had suffered any loss and claimed it was wrong that disciplinary proceedings should be taken against him alone. He said if action was to be taken it should be against all partners involved. Tribunal said Maiden's equivocal attitude to his undertakings led it to conclude he did not fully appreciate the import of his undertakings. His conduct had been "naive in the extreme" and the tribunal had to question his competence as a solicitor.