Lord Justice Davis and Mr Justice Edis have allowed an appeal against a finding of ‘no case to answer’ by the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal (“the SDT”) on allegations made against Nabeel Sheikh, former senior partner and founder of the central London firm Neumans LLP.
The firm was subject to a Solicitors Regulation Authority intervention and shut down in July 2017 on suspicion of dishonesty, following a complaint by the Court of Appeal Criminal Division that a bill of costs submitted to it (for £2.9m) was suspected of having been fraudulently inflated. The disciplinary proceedings against Mr Sheikh arose out of the same facts.
Allowing the appeal, Lord Justice Davis held that the reasoning of the SDT in finding no case to answer was “seriously flawed” “plainly wrong and revealed an inadequate understanding” of the allegations and evidence advanced by the SRA and ordered the proceedings be remitted for a fresh hearing before a differently constituted panel of the SDT.
The judgment is here.
Sarah Bousfield appeared for the SRA, instructed by Capsticks Solicitors LLP