A barrister who failed to pay a fine imposed by the Bar Standards Board has been ordered to be disbarred.
The independent panel heard last week that unregistered barrister Christopher Mills had failed to pay the BSB a fine totalling £5,335. ?
The fine had been imposed after a previous tribunal in December 2012 found Mills to have held himself out as a barrister, which could have misled others about his practising status.
Mills was called to the bar in 1984 after completing the academic stage of his training. However, he had not completed pupillage so was not entitled to offer or provide legal services as a barrister, although he was permitted to use the title in limited circumstances.? ?
The five-person panel, chaired by His Honour Judge Stuart Sleeman, heard that Mills had failed to pay the original fine or respond to requests from the BSB for information.? ?
Sleeman said Mills' failure to comply with the previous tribunal order and his refusal to engage with the BSB showed 'no remorse' and a determination 'to defy his regulatory body'. ?
Mills was not present at the hearing.
Head of professional conduct at the BSB Sara Jagger said: 'The apparent lack of remorse and persistent defiance - of both the disciplinary and regulatory processes - undermines the reputation of the profession. Disbarment really was the only option left in this instance.'