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Solicitor struck off for false accounting

21 November 2013

An Aberdeen solicitor has been struck off the roll of solicitors for an "extensive catalogue of behaviour" amounting to professional misconduct, including failures to keep proper accounts and making false declarations in five accounts certificates.

In a decision released this week, the Scottish Solicitors Discipline Tribunal also found Alistair George Kay guilty of repeated failure to respond timeously, openly and accurately to reasonable enquiries made of him, and statutory notices served on him by the Law Society of Scotland, and correspondence from insurers under the professional indemnity insurance Master Policy; and failures to sign and return an application for confirmation and other papers sent to him by another firm of solicitors or to respond timeously to their reasonable enquiries.

Mr Kay did not appear to contest the charges, but evidence was led and the tribunal found the facts proved beyond reasonable doubt.

In its decision the tribunal said Mr Kay's conduct clearly "fell well below the standard to be expected of a competent and reputable solicitor", and could only be described as serious and reprehensible. The false declarations in the accounts certificates were deliberate and considered acts of dishonesty carried out over a period of two years. Overall, his conduct was an ongoing course that covered more than four years. It clearly presented a danger to the public, and was extremely likely to seriously damage the reputation of the legal profession.

Mr Kay's "complete failure to co-operate with his professional body" could be seriously detrimental to the public trust in solicitors, and demonstrated both a lack of remorse and insight into the consequences of his conduct.

The only conclusion that the tribunal felt that it could reach was that Mr Kay's name should be struck from the roll of solicitors in Scotland.

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