Does anyone know the name of the lawyer?
Victim Joan Marville is about to learn:
1. Barbados lawyers never go to jail for stealing from trust accounts
2. Unlike some jurisdictions, Bajan law firms are not required to have theft insurance to protect clients.
“Lawyers are held to a higher standard of conduct… breach of trust is a terrible, egregious offence… except in Barbados”
In Britain or the USA if a lawyer is unable to pay monies entrusted to the lawyer’s care, there is hell to pay and it usually happens in days. Upon receiving a legitimate complaint the Bar Association and sometimes the police show up at the law firm, nab the books and freeze the lawyer’s trust accounts. Very often the light-fingered lawyer ends up not only disbarred for life but in jail doing some serious time because the integrity of the legal profession must be upheld.
Except in Barbados where more often than not the Old Boy’s Club looks after everything quietly so as not to embarrass the club or lessen the public confidence in lawyers. Those cover-ups have had just the opposite impact though – folks have learned that there is little to discourage crooked lawyers in Barbados.
The latest story follows the usual pattern: A resident of a foreign country, in this case the USA, sold some land in Barbados in 2006 and hired a Barbados lawyer to complete the transaction.
The crooked Barbados lawyer handled the sale and received the money from the purchaser, some $100,000. Instead of transferring the money to the client, the lawyer simply kept the money and began the usual dance of delay, delay, delay until it was obvious that the money did not reside in the lawyer’s trust fund – if it ever did.
That was in 2006. Here we are six years later and the victim, retired nurse Joan Marville, still waits for justice. The article in the Nation is so poorly written that we can’t tell when Marville first approached the Barbados Bar Association and the police. Presumably she didn’t wait six years!
But none of that matters because most Bajans can already predict what will happen to the crooked lawyer: nothing. We can’t come up with one crooked Barbados lawyer who has gone to jail.
Buying or selling real estate on Bim? Good luck with the crap shoot!
Here’s a few of our previous stories about crooked Bajan lawyers…
Here is the latest story as it appears online at The Nation. We have to reprint it here in full as that paper has a history of removing/modifying stories to suit various agendas. Please do read the story at The Nation, but if it’s gone someday you can read it here…
BY CARLOS ATWELL | MON, SEPTEMBER 24, 2012 – 12:10 AM
A BARBADIAN-BORN woman who lives in the United States is pursuing legal action against a local attorney at law to recover almost $100 000 owed to her from a land transaction.
The woman, retired nurse Joan Marville, said she had notified the police, raised the matter with the Barbados Bar Association and hired a lawyer to help her get her money from the sale of land at Balls Plantation, Christ Church, in 2006. But the lawyer said in a letter his firm had financial problems and he was in the process of trying to recover more than $2 million to pay back numerous creditors, including banks and other clients.
Marville spoke to the DAILY NATION yesterday at Amaryllis Hotel, where she is staying until she returns to Queens, New York, on Wednesday.
“My sister and I own land at Balls Plantation, a part of which was being used by Direct Rentals, a car rental place,” she explained. “They were using it for free, so we decided to rent it to them; and then they decided they wanted to buy it.”