A solicitor has been suspended from practising for a year after a tribunal found that his Lancashire-based firm wrongly allowed its Saudi Arabian client‘s account to be used as a banking facility.
Raja Shazad Khan, the owner of Justice Solicitors, also known as Tangent Law, admitted to having failed to supervise unqualified consultant Colin Goldring who paid £7.2m from the firm’s client account to third parties without the consent of the firm’s client, a Law Society Gazette report said.
Goldring, who co-owns the rugby club Worcester Warriors, has also been banned from working for a law firm without permission from the Solicitors Regulation Authority.
In its ruling, the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal did not identify the client of the firm but he is believed to be Prince Badr Bin Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia, who wanted to buy three supercars – two Ferraris and a Bugatti.
Prince Badr deposited £8.1m into Justice Solicitors’ client account to buy the cars, but the firm made several payments to intermediaries without his consent, the tribunal heard.
The prince “never received the motor cars or had most of his funds returned,” his solicitors said.
The law firm transferred £1.2m to a bank account in Tunisia but the checks and balances on the transactions were not clear.
Khan is indefinitely banned from managing or owning a law firm or practising on his own account and ordered to pay the Authority’s costs of £20,000, the Gazette reported, adding that Goldring is also ordered to pay £13,000.
In a statement, Goldring, who acted as the intermediary between the prince and the party selling cars, regretted the failings “found at the firm I was working for as a trainee which impacted some work I did for a client.”
“The outcome delivered by the SRA acknowledges the lack of appropriate supervision provided to me as a trainee solicitor. It cleared me of any allegations of dishonesty or lack of integrity and did not impose a fine or ban,” he said.