Crime & Court

Don’t Look At His Past, Shah’s Lawyer Argues

Shah was disbarred from practising law after he was found guilty of seven counts of professional misconduct and two counts of unsatisfactory professional conduct by the Independent Legal Services Commission in June 2012.
15 Aug 2020 14:55
Don’t Look At His Past, Shah’s Lawyer Argues
Haroon Ali Shah (left) and lawyer Abhay Singh outside the High Court in Suva on August 14, 2020. Photo: Ashna Kumar

Haroon Ali Shah’s lawyer yesterday argued that his client be given a second chance at practising law and not to look at his past in an unbalanced manner.

Shah’s lawyer, Ricky Singh of Fazilat Shah Legal presented this argument on Shah’s behalf before the Acting Chief Justice Kamal Kumar in Suva.

Shah was disbarred from practising law after he was found guilty of seven counts of professional misconduct and two counts of unsatisfactory professional conduct by the Independent Legal Services Commission in June 2012.

Mr Singh told the court that Shah was one of the few barristers and solicitors of Fiji who had played a part in making laws for the country.

He added that Shah proved that he had enhanced the legal system through his skills.

The Legal Practitioners’ Unit counsel, Vinti Prasad, told the court that Shah had a pending criminal matter of disobedience of a lawful order.

She also told the court that Shah did not show any genuine remorse and was operating a law firm for which he failed to keep financial records.

Ms Prasad told the court that Shah also failed to comply with the Commission’s order to wind up his firm within 28 days and that he unlawfully provided legal advice, drafted documents and received monies.

She sought from the court that the order of the Commission for disbarment continues to stand.


Background

On June 22, 2012, Independent Legal Services Commissioner, Justice Paul Madigan ruled that the Chief Registrar struck Shah’s name from the roll of legal practitioners.

Shah was permitted to continue in practice for 28 days for the limited purpose of winding up his practice but in the course of that period he was not to make any court appearances or accept new instructions from existing or new clients.

Shah was found guilty in relation to monies held in a trust account on behalf of his client, Sashi Lata, for two and a half years.

Acting Chief Justice Kumar will deliver his judgment on notice.

Edited by Ranoba Baoa

Feedbackashna.kumar@fijisun.com.fj



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