Solicitors rebuked for frying pan attack and non-disclosure agreement

Solicitor’s weapon of choice

A solicitor who hit a person around the head with a frying pan, and another who tried to use a settlement agreement to prevent disclosures to HMRC, have been rebuked.

According to a notice published this week by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), Kamaljit Singh Bains was on holiday last year in Bangor, Wales when “he became involved in an argument with a member of the public and struck them around the head with a frying pan”.

He was arrested at the scene, but the member of the public did not want to support a criminal prosecution for assault.

Mr Bains was instead charged under section 4A(1) and (5) of the Public Order Act 1986 – causing intentional harassment, alarm or distress.

He pleaded guilty and was convicted at Caernarfon Magistrates’ Court, which fined him £1,760 and imposed a victim surcharge of £176 and costs of £85.

He notified the SRA of his conviction and admitted that he had failed to behave in way that upheld public trust and confidence in the profession.

In mitigation, Mr Bains said the member of the public did not sustain an injury, it was an isolated incident, he pleaded guilty and has paid the fine, and co-operated with the SRA’s investigation.

The regulator said a rebuke was appropriate because “the conduct was reckless as to the potential risk of harm, Mr Bains had direct responsibility for his conduct, and it creates a credible deterrent to Mr Bains and others”.

Separately, Justin Roy Emerson, a partner at Chelmsford firm Gepp & Sons, has been rebuked after drafting a client settlement agreement that attempted to prevent an individual and a company from making disclosures to HM Revenue & Customs.

This also failed to uphold trust and confidence and also breached paragraph 7.5 of the SRA Code of Conduct, which requires solicitors not to attempt to prevent anyone from providing information to the SRA or any other body exercising regulatory, supervisory, investigatory or prosecutory functions in the public interest.

The misuse of non-disclosure agreements has been an issue of intense scrutiny in recent times.

Leave a Comment

By clicking Submit you consent to Legal Futures storing your personal data and confirm you have read our Privacy Policy and section 5 of our Terms & Conditions which deals with user-generated content. All comments will be moderated before posting.

Required fields are marked *
Email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Will the SQE affect diversity in the legal profession?

Law firms are under increasingly pressure to attract a more diverse pool of young lawyers. One of the fundamental motivations behind introducing the SQE was to address this issue.

Should the SRA introduce tougher sanctions for AML breaches?

We have recently seen the Solicitors Regulation Authority fining law firms across England and Wales over a lack of proper anti-money laundering policies and procedures.

EHCPs and the uphill struggle for justice

The staggering truth behind the education system supporting children with special education needs and disabilities is that 80% of SEND children don’t receive the regular in-school support they need.

Loading animation