Solicitors from Hell website forced offline

Solicitors from Hell founder Rick Kordowski has given up his legal battle against the Law Society after Mr Justice Tugendhat granted the body injunctive relief and ordered the site to be taken offline.

It will be seen as a victory for the Law Society which has spent the last six months trying to close down the site which claims to name and shame lawyers who clients allege have delivered poor service.

Yesterday the Law Society asked Tugendhat J to grant an injunctive relief forcing Kordowski to take down the site or face contempt proceedings. A judgment will be delivered at a later date, the court said.

The parties have been locked in a bitter legal dispute since May after Mr Justice Henriques, ruling in a separate defamation case against Kordowski, recommended the body move to close down the site.

Henriques J said: “The time has surely arrived for the Law Society and Bar Council to consider some effective response to the conduct complained of in this case and other similar cases.

“No doubt the legal profession does, on occasion, fail those who seek its services. However, many conscientious and highly reputable firms and individuals have found themselves as objects of offensive abuse and defamatory publication at the behest of disappointed litigants.” (18 April 2011).

The Law Society instructed Matrix Chambers’ Hugh Tomlinson QC to launch a claim against him on behalf of all 145,381 solicitors practising in the England and Wales (11 May 2011).

In August Kordowski was told to take down the site by 2 September or face action for defamation, harassment and breach of the Data Protection Act (16 August 2011).

When he failed to take down the site Chancery Lane stepped up the pressure by handing him the High Court claim after he emerged from a bruising battle with Law Society chief executive Des Hudson.

Kordowski had launched a counter claim for defamation against the Law Society chief alleging that Hudson had labelled him a “criminal”.

Last month Tugendhat J threw out the claim, branding the bid “an abuse of the court process” (21 October 2011).

The judge said Kordowski’s complaint of spoken slander against Hudson could not be allowed because he had not made a complaint against Professor John Flood of the University of Westminster, who had repeated the alleged slander on his blog.