News In Focus
Police take on Ross Harper & Murphy case
Police are investigating the financial affairs of collapsed legal firm Ross Harper & Murphy, it has been reported.
Practice at the firm was suspended in April 2012 when the Law Society of Scotland petitioned for the appointment of a judicial factor after an inspection revealed financial irregularities. Subsequent proceedings before the Scottish Solicitors' Discipline Tribunal resulted in four partners, Alan Miller, Jim Price, Cameron Fyfe and Alan Susskind, being struck off and two others, Paul McHolland and Joseph Mullen, censured.
Dishonest practices uncovered at the firm included failing to pay out money received from the Scottish Legal Aid Board that was intended for expert witness fees, with cheques being issued and recorded in the books, but not actually sent out, so as to help the firm's cash flow. Accounting certificates were also submitted to the Society that did not reflect the true financial position.
Two specialists have each claimed that they are owed £4,000 to £4,000 in fees.
Police enquiries to establish whether any criminal conduct has taken place are said to be at an early stage.