A solicitor has been removed from his posts as a deputy district judge and assistant coroner after the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal (SDT) found him guilty of misconduct.
Andrew Pascoe was fined £20,000 earlier this year after being found guilty of 20 allegations about his management of a firm in which he was a partner, with a particular focus on nine bills raised and paid without notifying the clients involved.
Further, his future employment as a solicitor had to be approved by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, while he was banned from practising as a sole practitioner or partner or member, holding client money or be a signatory on any client account, and being a compliance officer.
He sat at magistrates’ courts in the north of England and as the assistant coroner for North Lincolnshire and Grimsby.
The Judicial Conduct Investigations Office said in a statement: “The SDT found that Mr Pascoe was guilty of professional misconduct in connection with financial irregularities in his firm in his capacity as a solicitor. Mr Pascoe was fined £20,000 by the tribunal and conditions were placed on his ability to practise.
“The Lord Chancellor and Lord Chief Justice found that Mr Pascoe’s conduct fell below that expected of a judicial office holder and have removed him from office.”
The SDT said Mr Pascoe, who was 65 at the time, had been “woefully lacking in steady adherence to ethical principles”.
It continued: “Findings had also been made of other breaches of core duties including: failure to act in client’s best interests, failure to maintain public trust, failure to provide a good standard of service and failure to protect client money and assets. [Mr Pascoe] had had the opportunity to consider the rule breaches alleged and had admitted them. They went far beyond purely technical breaches.”