Lawyer Sanctioned After Cocaine Found After Halloween Party

| General


In late November 2022, the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal publicized the judgment handed down to a solicitor who had illegally been in charge of a motor vehicle having consumed illicit substances.       

What Happened in the case?

The legal professional achieved her entry into the legal profession in 2014. However, she appears to have only held a certificate for twenty-four months and the SRA communicated that there does not seem to be any record of her holding such a certificate since approximately 2016. Instead, the legal professional since this time appears to have set her sights on embarking on a career in the management of events. 

Matters escalated in October of 2019 when the legal professional had been providing her services in an events management capacity during a party to mark Halloween. After completing her shift at the respective Halloween Party the legal professional had made plans to travel by car to the City of London. However, some persons present at the festivities seemingly influenced her that it would be wise to attend a post-party gathering. The festivities appeared uneventful and as she was to be in charge of a motor vehicle later in the evening so she decided not to consume alcohol. However, inexplicably the lawyer made the intellectually redundant decision to consume a pill. She claimed that she had consulted with the supplier of the drug and they confirmed that this pill supposedly did not contain any illicit substances. The legal professional continued partying and seemingly sensibly decided to delay her departure until just before midday to give any substances she may have consumed the best possible opportunity to vacate her system and she was in the best state of health to operate a motor vehicle. 

Be Sure Your Sins Will Find You Out…

However, despite the rest she had had, the preparations made and the delays before traveling, and the decision to travel later on the next day, she was in an astonishingly unfortunate situation of being involved in a serious collision that involved four vehicles in a dangerous impact. The collision was so severe that she needed to be transported to the nearest hospital. During her initial triage and shortly afterward the medical staff made inquiries as to whether the legal professional had consumed illicit substances. After the lawyer had answered in the affirmative the nursing staff decided to notify this admission to law enforcement authorities. When the police investigated they discovered that the legal professional had on her person varying amounts of cannabis, cocaine, and diazepam. If this was not serious enough when the authorities conducted a routine drug test it alerted them to the presence of the illicit substances cocaine and MDMA in her bloodstream. To make an example of the lawyer the Magistrates Court imposed a fine of nearly five hundred pounds and just shy of an eighteen-month ban from driving. 

What Did The Solicitors Regulation Authority Say?

To her credit, the lawyer acted with honesty and integrity when she notified the SRA of what had taken place. However, despite this openness, the regulator handed down a fine in the amount of ten thousand pounds and a costs order of two and a half thousand pounds.       

Pages Turned…Lessons Learned…

Legal professionals reading this should:

  • avoid being in the presence of a consuming illicit substances 
     
  • not be handling illicit substances drive with due care and attention at all times and
     
  • realize that the law enforcement authorities and the Solicitors Regulation Authority will take a dim view.  

    to mitigate against finding themselves in this unfortunate situation. 

ASSESSING FIRMS

#AddleshawGoddard #CMS #EvershedsSutherlandLLP #DLAPiper #PinsentMasonsLLP #Shoosmiths #BrabnersLLP #DavittJonesBould #DWF #GateleyPlc #HillDickinsonLLP #JMWSolicitorsLLP #KuitSteinartLevy #Mills&Reeve #SquirePatonBoggs #TLT #Clyde&CoLLP #BrowneJacobson

SOURCES USED WHEN WRITING THIS ARTICLE

[SOURCE 1] Solicitors Regulation Authority and Rachel Pickles  – Judgment – Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal – Case Number - 12346.2022.Pickles.pdf (solicitorstribunal.org.uk)

[SOURCE 2] Solicitors Act 1974

[SOURCE 3] Rose, Neil – Solicitors sanctioned after drugs and dangerous driving convictions– Legal Futures – 18 November 2022 - Solicitors sanctioned after drugs and dangerous driving convictions - Legal Futures

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