Barbados Bar Association Condones Theft From Clients – And Destroys The Reputation Of Honest Bajan Lawyers

How The Old Boys’ Network Covers For Crooked Barbados Attorneys

In every civilized jurisdiction in the free world, an attorney who steals a client’s money is at the very least disbarred, never to practice law again. Lawyers who “borrow” (real world word = “steal”) from their trust funds usually end up doing a couple of years in jail.

All over the world, the legal profession and the courts treat theft and misuse of clients’ funds as one of the most serious offenses a lawyer can commit. There is no “gray” area when it comes to the sanctity of monies entrusted to a lawyer. The discipline committees and the courts hammer lawyers for breach of trust involving money because they know that the very credibility of the legal profession is threatened.

Honest lawyers know that if their Bar Association and the local Courts don’t come down hard on offenders, it undermines the entire legal system – lawyers, judges, the courts… everything. Stiff penalties awarded by the disciplinary committees and the courts also act as a deterrent. Lawyers who might consider using their trust account funds to short some stocks or to cover the purchase of a new car “only for a few days and then I’ll put the money back” think twice if they know that getting caught means the end of being a lawyer forever.

Throughout the civilized world, breach of trust involving monies is the one unforgivable sin for lawyers…

Theft Of Trust Money Is The One Unforgivable Sin For Lawyers – Except In Barbados

It has now been clearly established that the Barbados Bar Association does not consider it a big deal for a lawyer to steal $130,000 as long as the lawyer returns the money when caught.

According to the Disciplinary Committee of the Barbados Bar Association, a simple reprimand is a suitable penalty.

No disbarment. No criminal charges. No Jail.

Not even a suspension… only a reprimand to the lawyer-thief: “You’ve been caught stealing from a client. Give back the money and don’t be so foolish to get caught again.”

The lawyer-thief will not be disbarred, and is free to continue to practice law in Barbados.

That, my fellow citizens, is a national disgrace. More than that, it threatens our status as an offshore center for finance and corporations and it dirties the reputation of every honest Barbados lawyer.

Mortimer Clarke – Barbados Attorney And Thief

In 1999, Michael Atkins of England retained Barbados attorney Mortimer Clarke of Sui Juris law firm at Crichlow Alley, The City, to handle a Barbados real estate deal for him. Mr. Atkins needed a lawyer to close the deal, receive the money and do the legal necessities.

Boy… did Mr. Atkins pick the wrong lawyer!

Attorney Mortimer Clarke collected $150,000 but didn’t pass the money on to his client, Mr. Atkins.

Attorney Clarke kept the money. Then in 2002, after three years of Mr. Atkins clamoring for his money, Attorney Clarke gave him $20,000 of the funds. That was it.

What happened to the $150,000? Attorney Mortimer Clarke used the money for his own purposes – according to a Nation News article “to help with the running of his office and circumstances at home, among other things.”

In other words… Mortimer Clarke stole the funds from the real estate transaction and used the money to pay his own expenses… and “among other things” – the details of which are being concealed by the courts and/or the Nation News.

Barbados Bar Association Disciplinary Committee: “For $150,000 Theft, A Reprimand Will Do”

So what did the Disciplinary Committee of the Barbados Bar Association think was an appropriate penalty for Mortimer Clarke?

Disbarment? Jail?

Nope… a “reprimand” was the penalty assessed. That’s all, folks!

Give the guy a break. After all… once he was caught, Attorney Clarke paid back the stolen money!

And Mr. Clarke could have escaped with only the reprimand except that he failed to repay $35,407.04 in interest and travel expenses incurred by the victim of the lawyer fraud – Michael Atkins.

Which leads us to the current situation where the President of the Barbados Bar Association is placed in the outrageous position of appearing before Chief Justice David Simmons to argue that the reprimand imposed by his own Disciplinary Committee is not good enough unless Clarke pays the interest and travel expenses!

Chief Justice David Simmons Has A Legacy Of Defending Crooked Lawyers

According to the Nation News, Chief Justice David Simmons is to rule on this situation, but we wonder how he will view the situation. Will he consider the overall integrity of the legal profession?

Or… like the time he defended Ezra Allyne for misappropriating a client’s money in a similar situation, will Sir David feel empathy with a corrupt lawyer? In the case of Ezra Allyne, Allyne was required to repay money to a client for a failed real estate deal… but couldn’t because… doan ya know… the client’s money wasn’t in Ezra’s trust account any longer!

Ezra was suspended for three years, but it looks like David Simmons got him off on a technicality. Have a read of the court record here and make up your own mind about what David Simmons did then and will do now with this new case of a crooked lawyer taking a client’s money from his trust account.

Chief Justice Simmons… Are YOU going to rubber-stamp this cover-up of a lawyer who stole $150,000 from his trust account?

Foreign Investors Be Warned!

By imposing only a “reprimand” for the theft of $150,000 of foreign investor’s money, the Barbados Bar Association has destroyed the credibility of every lawyer on the island. A greedy, dishonest lawyer has been given a pass by the “old boys” network at the Bar Association.

We’ve got news for the “old boys” of the Barbados legal profession – this isn’t like the old days. You can’t cover up for Mortimer Clarke. You can’t hide your disgusting failure to deal with this breach of trust.

Why should foreign investors now trust any Barbados lawyer with money? You’ve just proven to the world that our breach of trust standards are so low as to be absolutely no deterrent.

A clear case of a lawyer involved in a $150K fraud – and the Barbados Bar Association thinks a simple “reprimand” is appropriate.

Again we ask the members of the Barbados Bar Association: Why should anyone trust a Barbados lawyer?

Tell Us Your Lawyer Stories!

The greedy, dishonest lawyers and the Barbados Bar Association have destroyed the credibility of the island’s lawyers, but we know that the current story is just the tip of the iceberg.

We’ve all heard the tales of estates handled by Barbados lawyers… still not settled after 15 years.

We’ve heard about the parents’ estate where the lawyer ended up living in the parents’ home!

And who could forget about the famous signature move practiced by many Barbados lawyers, called “Handling both ends of the deal without telling the client”.

Tell us your stories, folks! Let it all out. Tell it true…

… and maybe, just maybe, those Barbados lawyers who are honest and care about their profession will cry “ENOUGH!”

Until then, our Barbados Bar Association will be looked upon by the rest of the world as what they are…

Monkees in a barrel. Or perhaps, Crabs in a barrel – destroying their own legal profession, forgetting honour and the law in their quest for filthy money.

Read the article from the Nation News and spit on the ground next time a Barbados lawyer talks of honour or duty…

From The Nation News (original online here)

OBJECTION!
Published on: 4/17/08.

by JULIA RAWLINS-BENTHAM

PRESIDENT of the Barbados Bar Association, Wilfred Abrahams, has objected strongly to a recommended reprimand for a lawyer who used a client’s $130 000 for personal reasons.

Addressing the Court of Appeal yesterday when the matter was called, Abrahams said the interests of the public and attorneys needed to be protected. He added that there was still an outstanding $35 407.04 expense which was incurred in travelling back and forth from England in an attempt to retrieve the money.

The Disciplinary Committee of the Barbados Bar Association recommended last September that attorney Mortimer Clarke, who was retained by Michael Atkins in a 1999 property transaction, be reprimanded.

Clarke was Atkins’ attorney for the purchase of a property at Maxwell Coast Road, Christ Church, and received $150 000 for the completion
of the purchase.

However, he only passed on $20 000 in 2002, keeping the other $130 000 to help with the running of his office and circumstances at home, among other things.

He has repaid $130 000, but still owes $35 407.04 in interest and travel expenses incurred by Atkins who resides in England.

However, Abrahams said if the matter was terminated with just a reprimand, the issue of the outstanding money would remain live and might end up before the court again. Therefore any sanction passed by the court must take into account the money which was still outstanding.

Attorneys Cicely Chase-Harding, QC, Andrew Brewster and Shelly Stuart appeared on behalf of the committee; Abrahams
for the Bar; and attorneys Donna Brathwaite and Rosalind Jordan for the Attorney-General.

Clarke’s lawyer was Tyrone Estwick, who was absent from yesterday’s hearing. They have until Thursday to say why the court should not increase or vary the reprimand.

In her response, Brathwaite also said she did not believe justice would be fully served with a reprimand if funds were still owed.

The recommendation for the reprimand, said Chase-Harding, was based on the fact that Clarke had admitted to misappropriating the funds and repaid the $130 000.

However, she said, there was the outstanding $35 407.04.

Chief Justice Sir David Simmons said he believed that an adjournment was reasonable to allow Clarke and his attorney to prepare a response to Abrahams’ claim.

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63 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Crime & Law, Ethics, Offshore Investments, Real Estate

63 responses to “Barbados Bar Association Condones Theft From Clients – And Destroys The Reputation Of Honest Bajan Lawyers

  1. Red Lake Lassie

    Don’t get me going on Barbados lawyers! There are bad lawyers everywhere but the difference is in the USA or UK a lawyer who takes real estate money goes to jail. Do No Pass Go.

    Barbados is too small. Everybody knows everybody in the law offices and clients who are poor or from abroad are fair game. Thank god my children started new lives and careers away from this place. They escaped and I remain.

  2. from a friend of roth

    I found this on the Ezra Alleyne link from Thewhiterabbit…

    A lawyer walking across a farm field steps in a pile of cow dung on a hot day. He looks down and screams “Oh my God, I’m melting”!

  3. Sad To Say

    At least one sitting member of this parliament is in the same boat as Mortimer Clarke. The fact is we can rant and rave but it is going to be business as usual.

    Another pet peeve that I have with the legal system here is the “minimum fee structure” where lawyers cannot charge less that what is stipulated by the bar association. This is one of the first issues that should have been tackled by the Fair Trading Commission, however, the status quo remains.

  4. ROBOT

    thanks for the information on mortimer clarke
    i probably did not know or did not remember this story

    i am grateful because i do business that involves him

    i will definitely note this

    thanks again

    when yuh see some people suffering –you wonder why but it is usually their past sins catching up with them. materialism is a serious, serious , serious thing

  5. Rumplestilskin

    I stand corrected, but in my opinion I seem to remember that a previously disbarred attorney for allegedly this same practice was reinstated by the CJ a couple of years ago because it was thought that to disbar him for life would deprive him from earning a living (from a simple layman’s viewpoint this appears to be the thinking of the Court).

    So, if such was the case, I do not know why this is different than in other countries.

    Maybe they were thinking that there are not many career options in little BIM.

    Then again, maybe that is why another lawyer who also allegedly suffered this same fate is now apparently a golf pro in Florida.

    How come some people can emigrate so easily, but the like of us would have to fill out a million forms and wait years?

    Hmm….

  6. Victim

    My brother tried to purchase a building lot in St. Peter. The lawyer kept the five thousand dollar deposit when the seller backed out. Twenty minutes meeting was the only work the lawyer did. My brother reported the theft but gave up. He never did buy a vacation lot in Barbados and never went back.

  7. Adrian Hinds

    I am always amazed that Bajans allow lawyers to get away with such blatant thieving and always seem ready to maim their neighbour when they are wronged by them. What is the difference? I would have to think long and hard to justify non-action on my part in the face of such thieving and no recourse from the judicial system. Well in truth nuh lotta thinking will be required as i am certain somebody must be made tuh pay.

  8. Ricketts Farley

    Something must be done about the lawyers in Barbados and stop picking on the ZR’s

    How are lawyers promoted to QC’s, when there are complaints against them!!

    Mississauga, Ontario.

  9. Hants

    Adrian Hinds be careful what you say.Some of our
    DLP “Lyawyer” brethren are guilty of conniving, deception,lying to other Dlp brethren.

    I too am a “victim” but I am willing to cross a line that others may not;even if it embarasses family and friends.

    Everyone who reads this blog knows that I have been an unrelenting DLP supporter.BFP owners will testify to that but I will not be “guess the expletive” by any lawyer D, B or ITMF.

    BFP if my situation gets nasty you will be the second to know. I am only at boiling point right now and still in control.

  10. Sargeant

    The designation QC was abolished in Ontario in the 80’s by the Provincial Liberal government when it was elected to replace the Progressive Conservatives ( an oxymoron if ever there was one) as it was used to reward friends, cronies and lackeys. Ian Scott the Attorney General who was responsible for the change suggested that instead of QC’s they should be called “Senior Ontario Barrister” or the acronym SOB’s.

  11. Nevermind pretzels

    A “reprimand” for pilfering $150,000 from a trust fund?

    This is a disgusting position by the Barbados Bar.

    Honour among theifs I guess.

  12. Anonymous

    Barbados seems to be a lawless land, run by lawyers. If you must use a lawyer, interview several. Be clear when you make the first appointment that this is so you can interview them, and that you expect the first hour to be free. If they refuse, strike them from your list. If you retain one, ensure their remit is extremely clear, and ask for weekly statements of billables. Define clearly the deliverables. It is sad that things appear to be so backwards there. Why are the usually vocal bloggers so quiet on this subjet.

  13. Tell Me Why

    Why are the usually vocal bloggers so quiet on this subject.
    …………………………………………………………………………………
    You cannot pelt rocks when you have glass doors. Get the picture.

  14. Tell me Why

    You cannot pelt rocks when you have glass doors. Get the picture.

  15. 75

    A associate of mine had a bad experience with a business deal in Barbados. He retained a local lawyer to speak to a contract which existed, based on standard boilerplate which had been tested many times away. The lawyer claimed that the contract was useless, and would have to be redeveloped, although he could not explain what was wrong with the exiting contract. When my associate asked for a written opinion, the lawyer responded with a bill for $5000 us. The gentlman involved has learned his lesson, and will never do business in Barbados again.

  16. stingin ant

    Choose your lawyers carefully

    Most of the lawyers here, I say most, are utterly corrupt and dishonest.

    You fret about $150,000… what about the lawyer who stole one million dollars ($1,000,000.00) from a poor black man, who received the money as an insurance settlement, and still continues to practice at our corrupt bar.

  17. J

    Some years ago my sister who lived over in away hired a lawyer to purchase a commercial property which she had identified and which was for sale in Holetown. After a while the lawyer stopped communicating with her. What do you know? The lawyer had gone to the seller and purchased the property for himself. Anyway shortly afterwards he got real sick and did not make it to old age. He was a lay preacher too. I think many of the lawyers seem to forget that in Barbados many of us still know obeah.

  18. Many of these layers are serious gamblers. Check the slot machines and off track betting arcades. They must also create an appearance of wealth. When I was ordered by the court to pay my ex-wife over $100,000 as part of divorce settlement, I had the draft made out in her name and sent to her lawyer…my lawyer was furious as I should have paid the money to hime and he at some point a year later would have paid it to her lawyer who would have paid it to her another year later and both would have made considerable interest along the way…fortunately, she did not endorse the draft to her lawyer as he requested..and althought he completed the divorce documents, he has not spoken to her since.

  19. Sad To Say

    Heard that the CJ is trying to kiss up to PM David Thompson by putting his name forward for a QC. The PM is to get back to the CJ on this one.

    I recommend that he accept the QC but still sick his pit bulls on the CJ. The CJ should me made to pay for all the @%^# that he has been involved in as a AG/ MP.

  20. Anon

    Anonymous said
    “If you must use a lawyer, interview several. Be clear when you make the first appointment that this is so you can interview them, and that you expect the first hour to be free. If they refuse, strike them from your list.”

    I find your comment so funny.

    Have you ever gone to a doctor for an opinion and said to him that you expect the first hour to be free.

    You would be laughed out of town. So why would you expect a professional to give you any hour of his/her time free of costs.

    I find it so funny that you guys are always so fast to criticise Barbadian Attorneys who charge you minimum fees and charge you for the whole matter based on a scale of fees which are easily available to you as a client to verify. But are so happy to pay foreign Lawyers for each second of their time meanwhile knowing full well that their time is as expensive as $700 an hour. But a little Bajan Attorney charge you $3,000.00 you want to know when, where what and how.

    Explain that to me.

    I know of a case where a Barbadian attorney did a personal injury and charged the client the prescribed 10% fee. Do you know that the American Attorney charged the client 1/3 of the total settlement and then another set as time billed plus tax. So lets see 10% of say $3000. is $300 while 1/3 of $3000 is $1,ooo.

    And for the record Client Accounts/Trust Accounts do not bear interest. You can verify this at any Bank.

    A few dishonest Attorneys does not make the entire profession dishonest.

    I have worked with a number of Attorneys none of whom have been dishonest. What I can say about them though is that they are stuck and think that the world revolves around them. Obnoxious YES!!!!! Dishonest for the majority No. For the others including several of the current Government Ministers and even the head YES.

  21. Sad To Say

    Anon = Attorney-At-Law (BDS). Why should there be a fee scale that insists on a minimum fee. After all this is a free market economy where if someone wants to “give away” there services there should be no LAW preventing them from doing such.

    This LAW is in place to protect the “brand name” attorneys from the “new bees” who are prepared for lower fees than these “gas gusseting geezers”.

    If the QCs do sincerely offer a better service than the non-QCs they should have no fear regarding their ability to make an income in an open market.

    Furthermore BDS QCs do collect 30% on personal injury cases (just 3% less than US attorneys). I am speaking from first hand experience. My mother experienced a significant life altering injury resulting in permanent disability. She went to a “brand name” QC team. Her CLICO payout was 400K+ and her QC team was paid 60K+ by CLICO and the QCs “reprimanded” another 60K+ from her 400K+ cheque. These bastards received > 120K+ for securing a 400K+ settlement. Do the maths – what is the difference from the US attorneys?

    In my estimate she could have stuck with one of the non-brand name attorneys and would have been over 40K+ ahead of the game.

  22. 75

    To Anon. Yes, I have gone to a doctor, and expected the first hour to be free. You see, when you hire professionals, they work for you. They have to convince me that they have what its going to take to do the work I want done, using methods and from prespectives I feel comfortable with. Again, the professionals work for you, they are not doing you a favour. If they have a issue with this, then I don’t feel theyre worth my time.

  23. Sad To Say

    While I am on the subject of attorneys in BDS I want to deal with yet another issue. ‘

    A very close friend recently bought a property in Florida and the whole deal was completed in two weeks. COMPLETED – YES. I bought a property here in BDS last year and the deal took 8 months to be completed. EIGHT MONTHS.

    The attorneys here in BDS take their “cool time” to complete and deal because they make money via interest on my/ your money while the deal is “going down”.

    This inefficient system is a big turnoff to potential outside investors (e.g. returning nationals). However, I would not hold my breath on this one for attorneys control the 3 arms of GVT and will never cut off the branch behind them.

  24. 110

    But are so happy to pay foreign Lawyers for each second of their time meanwhile knowing full well that their time is as expensive as $700 an hour. But a little Bajan Attorney charge you $3,000.00 you want to know when, where what and how.

  25. reluctant nonbeliever

    I think we’d all like to know the name of this doctor who didn’t charge you for the first hour’s consultation, 75.

    Here in Barbados?

  26. Sad To Say

    I notice the attorneys skirting around my post. Here in BDS these jokers are a law onto themselves.

  27. File 13

    My experience with lawyers has been awful. They lie to you straight to your face. Then there are the excuses and time wasting. There however is no procrastination when it comes to their fees. Having said that I have encountered a few trustworthy attorneys. Lawyers are a necessary evil.

  28. Pingback: Once More - No Penalty For Breach Of Trust In Barbados « Barbados Free Press

  29. anonlegal

    A very close friend recently bought a property in Florida and the whole deal was completed in two weeks. COMPLETED – YES. I bought a property here in BDS last year and the deal took 8 months to be completed. EIGHT MONTHS.

    —————————————-

    We have a different (more complicated) system in the caribbean when it comes to land. Don’t judge us by the US standards.

    Truthfully, Land transactions should take less time if you have your land registered, but from what i hear that doesnt help these days (but it ought to).

    Here are some Some of the reasons selling land in barbados takes so long :

    Lawyers must make sure that the person selling the property actually owns the property.

    Sometimes persons lose title deeds and therefore cant prove they own the property. This makes the process even longer than it already is.

    Even if you have title deeds, the attorney has to actually trace how the land came into the vendor’s possession.

    To add insult to injury, a mortgagee (Bank or other financial institution) generally won t grant a mortgage to the purchaser unless it is certain that the land is rightfully the vendors (these institutions are usually interested in other informtion about the property as well, e.g. whether there are any restrictive covenants affecting the property. They wont grant a mortgage until these questions are answered).

    If you register your land then you should have an easier time because the certificate of title should be ample proof that you own the property however not many people have registered their land.

  30. Sad To Say

    Anonlegal thanks for your response.

  31. Eddie

    I have had a few dealings with lawyers that went sour due to their dishonesty. I won’t mention them as they would recognise me.
    There are some good attorneys out there but it seems that they are in the minority.
    Something needs to be done; but the truth is, I feel this is would be a pipe dream.
    Will a brother go against a brother?
    Take a bow Mr. Abrahams – but watch your back!

  32. docs and lawyers!

    it isnt just the lawyers wh0 do as they please and get away with it. the medical profession in barbados are just as corrupt and unethical. both groups close ranks and protect each other. a neighbour of mine got the run around from a lawyer who stole a lot of money from him and when he could not get any joy from any of those who should have helped him he turned up at the lawyer’s house one night with his sons and beat the hell out of the crooked lawyer. maybe more of us should start doing the same.

  33. Fool me once

    Help us all please and someone print a list of lawyers against whom formal discipline has been taken and the end result.

    It is one thing to complain but if after an investigation there is truth to a lawyer pilfering story why don’t the public get to know?

    What we are hearing now is that a lawyer who stole from a client one year may be back doing it to someone else the next year only because there is no discipline to be had. Surely honest lawyers must be disgusted with this because it slimes them all.

  34. no name

    Fool me once said
    “Surely honest lawyers must be disgusted with this because it slimes them all”.

    Shouldn’t silence be viewed as complicity?

  35. Sad To Say

    I agree that the medical profession has a lot of issues that need to be exposed.

    The worst are the specialists who charge fees that cannot be justified based on the cost to perform the procedure.

    For example my father was diagnosed with prostate cancer earlier this year and now has to find 30K to have a procedure done. The heart specialist are no different. They charge privately 30K to open your blocked blood vessels yet they refuse to offer the poor attending the QEH the same facility.

    What is amazing is the fact that many of these specialist work at the QEH and privately – My helper was attending the outpatients clinic at the QEH for fibroids, this poor lady must have prepared for surgery at least 4 times over the last 28 months only to have the QEH doctors postpone it at the last minute. Subsequently she got fed up with the QEH and attended the same QEH doctors clinic privately and she was operated on within 4 weeks. She is now 5K poorer but she no longer has the fibroid problem.

    I would like to encourrage the BFP to start a seperate thread on the QEH or the medical profession here in Barbados. I am sure that there are lots of stories to be told.

  36. Hants

    Lawyers and Doctors in Barbados are considered Elite professionals and benefit from a system that appears to protect them from lawsuits.

    It is ridiculous that a manager of a supermarket og clothing store could be arrested by the police and charged with theft but a Lawyer is “disciplined for the same offence.”

  37. Tell me Why

    I would like to encourrage the BFP to start a seperate thread on the QEH or the medical profession here in Barbados. I am sure that there are lots of stories to be told.
    ………………………………………………………………………………….
    I agree with you on this point. The country is being raped daily by these doctors who charge hefty sums. I am surprised that BFP overlooking how some doctors charge $400.00 on every visit prior to an operation. This action goes on for five to ten visits and I can attest to that behaviour because it happened within my family.

  38. Citizen First

    Given the behavior and attitudes of some (many?) Bajan professionals, it can be disheartening when one considers that the overwhelming majority of them have been trained at public expense.

    That said, I commend the President of the Bar Association, Mr W. Abrahams, for his stance in this case and in other circumstances when the performance of attorneys was under review.

  39. Sad To Say

    I suspect that in the cases of the doctors and lawyers it is a case of when you go to Rome you do as the Romans do, i.e. if “teefing”is the norm well you just drop in line. The medical profession has become so corrupt it is not funny. Do you know I can pay for the type of medical report that I want? In other words I can pay a doctor to write me a “good” medical report. There are doctors who own the x-ray and lab facilities and they benefit from sending you for test, the more test they send you for the more money they make in the long run. There are doctors who make > 80K/ week from carrying out illegal abortions. Note abortions are only legal here in Barbados if carried out to save the mother’s life and if sanctioned by more than one doctor, very few abortions carried out here actually satisfy these criteria. There are doctors who molest their patients in their offices yet when reported to BAMP these doctors just get off with a slap on the wrist. The list of atrocities carried out by those in the medical profession goes on and on.

  40. Hants

    At least this doctor deserves thanks.

    Touched by an angel

    http://www.nationnews.com/story/326064453579326.php

  41. Ady Hotep

    Surely this did not happen in Barbados.This is quite scary.Are you in danger of becoming a ‘banana republic’?

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  45. Bimbro

    Even though I have n’t read it yet, BFP, thank you for publishing this article and hosting this discussion as I may be in need of a Barbadian lawyer, very soon. However, will read article and study comments before progressing!

  46. Scheherez

    @ Ady Hotep

    Sweetie, we already ARE a banana republic…and a real brown-spotted one at that!

    Watch your backs, Bajans…get out while you can!

  47. Hants

    Bimbro says

    “I may be in need of a Barbadian lawyer, very soon.”

    If you are an overseas Bajan be careful who you retain.

    Also be prepared to travel to Barbados frequently and budget for a lot of long distance calls.

    Lawyers are competent in dealing with Legal matters but a lot of them manage their offices poorly.

    There is also a pervasive attitude that you the client is not entitled to good timely service.

    I hope you are lucky and find one of the few good ones.

    Most importantly you will have to monitor their progress or you will become frustrated by the incessant waiting to get things done.

    You could also do like some people who wait 10 to 15 years to get their work completed.

  48. Bimbro

    Just noticed this and thanks for the advice, Hants.

    However, not sure what u meant by this: You could also do like some people who wait 10 to 15 years to get their work completed.

  49. Bimbro

    Just read the article and many of the posts. Must admit to having worked in a solicitor’s office so familiar with how they think – at least in the UK! I guess the thought of all that money just sitting there doing nothing, is too, much for them to resist! I must also, admit, much as I hate to disagree with my heroes BFP, that, I’m not a meanie and don’t have any immediate, strong objection to a lawyer borrowing my funds to make a quick purchase, if he needed to – I guess it might be seen as a ‘treat of the trade’, and which profession does n’t have it’s little treats here and there! However, this would need to be on the proviso that the money was invariably, replaced in a timely, manner. Succesful economies are driven by incentives! However, failure to repay the funds in time should be viewed with severity!

    Barbados seems in desperate need of a Register of reputable and trustworthy professionals, in all the various disciplines!

  50. no name

    Bimbro said,
    “Barbados seems in desperate need of a Register of reputable and trustworthy professionals, in all the various disciplines!”

    I wish you luck with that register.

  51. Bimbro

    Some of these answers are amazing, in their banality! Yet, as Bajans, I guess I need to be grateful for getting any kind of answer, at all! And you wonder why Bim’s in the state it’s in!

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  57. Andy Smith

    I read about this business some two years ago when it was topical and found it to be so outrageous that I could not be bothered to respond. I have had a change of heart after reading about further dishonesty in Barbadian legal quarters.

    I suppose that human beings by their very nature are flawed and invariably some will have some difficulty with adhering to the basic principles of probity. However, I will submit that in respect of legal matters, lawyers–and I include judges and all justice officials–should set the standard for the rest of the community.

    Lawyers who steal from their clients are, to all intents and purposes, de facto criminals. More seriously, such behaviour would be a breach of trust and should result in a heavy term of imprisonment. This should be the common currency for such theft, in any language.

    My view is that if you live abroad and wish to use a lawyer in Barbados for any purpose, you should instruct a legal representative in your home country to communicate with that person and conclude your business in Barbados. That will offer significant protection for the individual. Better to pay two lawyers than lose a small fortune.

  58. i had two lawyers in barbados rip me off one over twenty years ago and most recent Lawyer mariea philips took $2000 as a down payment to start a land deal for did nothing and for many month we contacted her .she agreed to repay but never i contacted the bar ass.with no help if any one want more info i have documentation to prove it the bar ass. and all are in on these deal.

  59. Pingback: Barbados Attorney Philip Vernon Nicholls arrested for Money Laundering, Theft of $675,000 from client real estate deal | Barbados Free Press

  60. ANN

    I AM A BARBADIAN WHO HAS SUFFERED LOST BECAUSE OF THE THIEVES THAT CALLED THEMSELVES LAWYERS IN BARBADOS. SERIOUS FRAUD HAVE BEEN COMMITED AGAINST MY GRANDMOTHER/MOTHER BY BARBADIAN LAWYERS. PEOPLE OF BARBADOS WHEREVER YOU ARE, LET US CALL DOWN THE FIRE OF GOD ON ALL BARBADIAN LAWYERS. WHEN I THOUGHT THAT I FOUND A LAWYER WHO WAS HONEST AND WILLING TO THE THE RIGHT THING, SHE TOO HAVE SHOWED HER THROUGH COLORS BY CHARGING MY 89 YEAR OLD MOTHER $15,000.00 FOR 20 HOURS OF NO WORK FOR READING EMAILS AND TALKING TO ANOTHER LAWYER IN BARBADOS THAT SHE NEVER GOT INSTRUCTED BY ME TO SPEAK TOO. ALL BARBADOS LAWYERS ARE IN A LODGE AND DON’T GO AGAINST EACH OTHER. DALE MARSHALL IS A THIEF; VONDA PILE IS A THIEF WHO WAS CHARGE FOR MONEY LAUNDERING AND NO ONE HAS HEARD WHAT HAPPEN TO THAT CASE AGAIN. TAMMY BRYON IS AN IDIOT AND SHOULD STOP PRACTICING LAW. IT APPEARS THAT ALL THE LAWYERS IN BARBADOS IS ASSOCIATED/CONNECTED OR SOMEONE BELONG TO A NETWORK OF THIEVES. THEY DON’T WORK FOR THE CLIENTS BUT FOR THEMSELVES AND THIER EGOS.

    GOD’SJUDGEMENT IS COMING FOR ALL YOU THIEVES.

  61. Pingback: Barbados Speaker of the House Michael Carrington is a crooked lawyer – stole $250,000 from client – disobeyed court order to pay it back | Barbados Free Press

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  63. Anonymous

    Bought land from disbarred lawyer mortimer Clark in 2005 . He is now refusing to remove his old boat which he agreed to remove 6 months after purchased. New an honest attorney for court order to remove from property in order to build my dream house for retirement.