Barbados Bar Association blames public for choosing crooked lawyers “at random”

President Leslie Haynes cautions public to avoid lawyers with “cash flow problems”, and to ignore recommendations of friends.

Barbados Bar Association website recommends lawyers who have been caught stealing from clients!

The President of the Barbados Bar Association vented at the public on Saturday while appearing at a seminar on conveyancing. When asked about the high number of lawyers lately charged with misappropriating clients’ money, Leslie “blame the victims” Haynes said that Barbadians “have to stop picking a lawyer at random or choosing one simply because a friend suggested a name.”

So it is the fault of the chickens for not knowing which mongoose will eat them. Or, more properly, the fault of honest Barbadians for not knowing which lawyers are dishonest.

The Barbados Bar Association does not provide a list of lawyers who have been disciplined or took money then paid it back when caught. Why not?


Astoundingly, BBA President Haynes also predicted that more Barbados lawyers will misappropriate their clients’ money because times are tough…

“. . . I suspect that this is not the end of the line because we are now in a recession and cash is tight. There is a cash flow problem, not only with attorneys. I would suspect with the country as a whole.

“So I don’t think we have heard the end of the story as yet. But, yes, we are concerned . . . and the public can help themselves by vetting the attorney in whom they entrust the business.”

… President of the Barbados Bar Association Leslie Haynes as quoted in The Sunday Sun Choose lawyers with care.

Too bad Mr. Haynes didn’t mention the numerous times that his organisation covered up for thieving lawyers, gave them a kiss and allowed them to continue to practice law if they paid back what they stole.

In today’s Nation Haynes continues to duck and weave with another article blaming the out of control legal profession on the shortcomings of the Legal Profession Act. Someone remind me who put the Act and other rules in place for the lawyers? Oh ya… the lawyers themselves in and out of Parliament!

While Mr. Haynes has a point about the lack of proper rules, oversight and accountability that the lawyers themselves failed to put in place, we need a lawyer now in Barbados, so let’s take his advice and find a good one…

Choosing a lawyer with the assistance of the Barbados Bar Association

We need a lawyer for “conveyancing” and mortgages – the subject of the seminar where Mr. Haynes accused the public of not properly selecting lawyers. In law, conveyancing is the transfer of legal title of property from one person to another, or the granting of an encumbrance such as a mortgage or a lien.

We won’t ask our friends for a recommendation because, according to Mr. Haynes, they know nothing. That’s why we’ll head to the website of the Barbados Bar Association (BBA) for assistance in choosing and “vetting an attorney” in whom we can entrust our money and home.

Hmmmm…. nothing on the home page about choosing a lawyer. Nothing in the FAQs either. No message from the Bar Association President, just a blank page where it should be. No list of lawyers who have been disciplined or otherwise been in trouble for having sticky fingers with clients’ funds. Hmmmm, I wonder why not?

Oh… the Barbados Bar Association website has lots of assurances about the BBA’s role in ensuring Barbados lawyers are ethical and follow the rules. I guess that’s good that I can rely upon the BBA.

So let’s use the website’s “Attorneys-at-law” section to find a lawyer experienced in Mortgages and Conveyancing. Hmmm, a selection of 16 lawyers, some very junior. I’d like someone who’s a little more experienced…

Okay. Here’s a lawyer who was admitted to the bar in 1996, so 14 years of experience in Conveyancing and Mortgage Finance. That’s good!

Mr. David Alvin Bryan, Attorney at law…

Hmmmm… nothing negative on the Barbados Bar Association website about this guy. He lists many financial specialties and I haven’t read anything bad about him my Barbados Advocate. He must be okay so I guess I’ll give him a call.

Crooked lawyer David Bryan turns from camera at court


I just found an article in Barbados Free Press and now I see that David Alvin Bryan stole money from a two clients, and was criminally charged! But, after being caught he paid back the money and was allowed to go free without penalty. That’s a great deal for him but I’m not so sure about the benefit to the public!

So much for calling Mr. Bryan. Maybe I’ll call another attorney taken from the BBA website list of fine upstanding Bajan lawyers…

Ah yes, Mortimer Clarke. He’s been a lawyer since 1984. Mortimer Clarke should be an honest fellow who knows what he’s doing!

Further Reading at BFP

Bar Association: Public having doubts about Barbados lawyers’ credibility. (No Kidding!)


Filed under Barbados, Consumer Issues, Corruption, Crime & Law, Ethics, Real Estate

37 responses to “Barbados Bar Association blames public for choosing crooked lawyers “at random”

  1. WTF?

    How the DUCK do I know if a lawyer has cash flow problems? Give him cash and see what happens?

    Mr. Haynes and his BBA are DUCKING hilarious!

  2. Gerry from Brighton

    My wife and I love Barbados since our first visit in 1988. We come every January without fail and twice if we can with the second holiday in summer when prices are low and fewer tourists are about. We talk about retiring to a small flat with a water view somewhere on the island and we take the tours each time. We don’t need to be on a beach or see the beach itself but we want a sea horizon view. We don’t care if the view is north south east or west.

    We would love to buy a place in Barbados and we are at a stage of life where we can. My wife and I dither because the problem is the uncertainty of your property titles and your lawyers. The horror stories we’ve heard from friends and acquaintances on the island over the last ten years would fill an encyclopedia. We love Barbados far more than Majorca where we enjoy a few weeks here and there but we cannot bring ourselves to commit because of our feelings that there is something unsure in Barbados about owning property. The lawyer stories are a large part of our uncertainty.

    With all respect to the good people of Barbados,


  3. nevermind kurt

    You guys are too much. ROTF.


    It all reads true BFP. Congrats for taking the lawyer’s words and shoving them down his throat. I love you guys.

  4. Green Monkey

    Yuh can see why when people mekkin sport and crackin jokes so many uh de lawyer jokes does compare lawyers to sharks. But at least when a shark coming fuh yuh in de sea, he ain’t skinnin his teet and smilin at yuh sweet, playin he is yuh friend just comin to gih yuh some help. Yuh does know exactly what the shark there for, to take as much of yuh as he can get, an yuh know in advance it gine hurt bad before you an he done.

  5. lawyer joke

    Did you hear they are thinking of replacing lab rats with lawyers?



    First of all, there are more lawyers than rats.

    Secondly, one can actually become emotionally attached to rats.

    Thirdly, there are just some things rats won’t do.

    Many Barbadian lawyers couldn’t pass an ethics course, let alone know where to find a copy of their code of ethics.

  6. Green Monkey

    let alone know where to find a copy of their code of ethics.

    Wait bo, yuh mean dey does got one uh dem, fuh true?

  7. Martgren

    Clearly this article highlights the principal concern o.b.o the man in the street. I have noted that QC Haynes said that the work of the disciplinary committee is too much. It means therefore that there too many infelicities by lawyers. Madame Cicely Chase is unable to chase after them… I support the above article to the letter. A member of the public who can read and write should sit on the committee.

  8. 4man

    How can a profession who fail time-after-time to regulate and discipline their own now blame the poor victims? This is #@$%ing ridiculous.

    If we are serious about making Barbados more competitive then we need to break-up the old legal fraternity.

  9. bajantoy

    I want a list of the thiefing lawyers.

  10. builderman

    what is there to be said……other than it will never work when they are asked to police themselves. There needs to be an independent association, incorporating people representing client rights, complete with the ability to discipline and to revoke liscences to practise. Only when the first few have been so disciplined, will things change. Only lawyers can take money they have no right to and are able to walk away having done so, free to repeat the process again.

  11. HM

    Ha ha ha! Has a lawyer in Barbados ever been disbarred? I’d be interested to know.

  12. just reading

    I myself and my family have been victims of three such lawyers over the past 11 years. It is sad to see you can’t find an honest lawyer that cares about doing a good job because its ethical and uplifting for his clients. Can you ask lawyer personally for their resume to see if they are qualified so your conscience can relax at least, or question their philosophies and tactics they use or is that rude?

  13. Pieter Pieper

    Let us not hold our breath!Not only local residents but non-residents,especially Bajans in the diaspora as well,should not expect too much from the chief justice designate.Until and unless ,as Builderman suggests,an independent association made up of non-lawyers is established to represent clients’ rights ,complete with the ability to discipline and to revoke licences to practise,lawyers in Barbados will continue their dishonesty with impunity.Hopefully it wont take the unlawful death of one or more lawyers as has happened in Jamaica and elsewhere,to bring about the change which is so desperately needed.God help us !

  14. mac

    In as many weeks three lawyers have been in court for the same thing, misappropriating clients funds (stealing their money in the real world). Until these people are jailed & struck-off there will never be any faith in lawyers or the justice system. After all, a bigamist was jailed as are vagrants, drunks, drug addicts oh! & robbers.

    Just because they are connected, should not give them license to do as they wish.

    Are we to believe that the likes of Thompson (CLICO) & Mottely (Four Seasons) are good lawyers, when so many clearly aren’t?

    For the BBA to blame the public for being robbed is offensive & utterly negligent of the real & unchecked problem.

  15. 4man

    In the last 2 years, the press has reported on these individuals

    E. Jackman
    M. Clarke
    A. Bryan Jr
    L. Bethel
    Cannot recall the name of the lady

    Surely the profession recognizes the need for change.

    When times were booming the attorneys got too reliant on the constant availability of new incoming funds to replace previous funds which they had diverted towards themselves. They were borrowing against future client funds expected from property transactions. As soon as the economy slowed down following the financial crises, the new funds were no longer enough to replenish what they had already taken in greed. Several attorneys got caught with their pants down. As Warren Buffet so succinctly put it “when the tide goes out, you can see who has been swimming without their trunks”.

    There needs to be improved legislation covering client and escrow accounts. These funds do not belong to the attorneys and should be properly segregated from other funds and managed in a fiduciary capacity.

  16. Peltdownman

    bajantoy, look in the yellow pages under “Attorneys at Law”!

  17. yatinkiteasy

    Lawyers don`t steal…they just “borrow” the clients` money.The difference is clear(to the courts)

  18. The List

    @ 4man

    “E. Jackman
    M. Clarke
    A. Bryan Jr
    L. Bethel
    Cannot recall the name of the lady”

    What became of the case of the lady lawyer I think her name was Ms. Waterman who could also be added to the list?

    What about the lawyer who sold the same land twice? Can he be added to the list too? The court required that the money be refunded to one of the parties and the lawyer continued along his merry way with only a slap on the wrist.

  19. Johnny Postle

    Why is Leslie Haynes always portrayed like a sniffling little weasle in most Nation pics. If this photo is anything to go by, I would not trust any Lawyer in Barbados. I want all the crooked lawyers to feel the full weight of shame and some bar time.

  20. Kammie fan

    I see Health Minister Donville Inniss has decided to bite the bullet and shakeup the doctors by agreeing to put non doctors on the Medical council. I look forward to the debate in Parliament on that next month. Perhaps the AG can learn something then and bring legislation to deal with lawyers and stop the lotta pretty talk.

  21. Robert

    Good article BFP

  22. Missing Home

    Leslie Haynes sounds like he’s given up and I can’t blame him. The foundation for the current mess was laid decades ago and it’s been getting worse every year. It is compounded by the Bar Association’s covering up for crooked lawyers for generations.

    Each new generation of lawyers learn from the examples of those before, and in this case the example has been that if you dip into the trust funds and get caught, nothing happens.

  23. judy

    let me first inform Mr Haynes that what these lawyers do is called ‘stealing’ not the politically correct term of ‘misappropriation’. It is time that these thieves face the full process of the law and justice be done. As one in the Real Estate Industry
    this behaviour is frightening to say the least.

  24. Tom A.

    Tom was one of the worst when it came to with-holding real estate funds, especially from foolish old people who cudn’t do much against a PM.

  25. iWatchya

    Can we demand that lawyers use an escrow account for monetary transactions?

  26. Mobert

    There is someone you can use to follow up on those withholding YOUR cash.

    A Mr.Collins.

    Just joking…of course.

  27. casual observer

    I think the solution is for all persons to do their legal work themselves since all lawyers are evil. When our loving relatives are cussing us and putting our things at the door, we should deal with it our selves. When our husband s and wives empty our joint accounts without our knowledge, we can find the soultions amongst ourselves. When we want to buy a piece of land off culpepper island or in Apes Hill,we can simply give him the money and get a receipt. when our bosses fire us for no reason, we can say thank you and move on. Or when someone molests our daughter we can forgive them and invite them to dinner and make up. So you see, lawyers only COMPLICATE the +_%$#@ out of us.

  28. curious

    Why do 90% of people go to lawyers for free advice and walk with cash to the doctor?

    Why do people always want to know why de wuk tekking suh long when duh ent pay cent one?

  29. 206

    I mailed a complain to the Barbados Bar Association more than a year ago regarding an issue I have…I followed up with a phone call this past January and they could not give me an estimation as to when my complain will be addressed. Now who do you turn to when the BBA seems to be protecting the villains?

  30. West Side Davie

    Nothing has changed since this article was posted two years ago. The Bar Association does not make a list of members who have been convicted of dishonesty or incompetence. Why not?

  31. Pingback: Another crooked Barbados lawyer steals foreigner’s real estate money | Barbados Free Press

  32. 11

    Response to curious, and why is it that when you pay your red cent, you unscrupulous lawyers run off with it.

  33. Pingback: Time for citizen oversight and control of lawyers | Barbados Free Press

  34. 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

  35. FTA

    The Bar Association should provide a list of lawyers who have been disciplined in the past for failing to account for money.

  36. Pingback: How trustworthy are Barbados lawyers? | Barbados Free Press


    Mr Leslie Francis Haynes Q C ;

    much respect as is due to you HONOURABLE SIR.

    your Q.C. having been earned by being a patsy for politician’s.
    Mr ex President of the Barbados Bar Association.
    Mr ex Director and General counsel of CLICO AND BAICO; both being money laundering, political influence peddling ( some people call that bribery) companies.

    Legal advisor to Allan Gordon Seale and Maria Nancy Seale of Bougainvillea Beach Resort Ltd.

    Legal advisor to Michael and Angela St John of Glacial Ice Ltd ;

    Are you familiar with the provisions of the Perjury Act ?

    Are you and the other ex Directors of CLICO and BAICO, your PALS, aware of the Proceeds of Crime Act, 2002?

    What has happened to the criminal charges brought against you and your pals ?……..
    Have your other PALS in high office perverted justice in some way ??
    your PALS, those so called public servants who fooled Barbadian and Caribbean peoples in to electing them,

    Are you a criminal lawyer?

    Therold Fields was an attorney at Law. Why has he not been prosecuted ??…..because he is / was an attorney at law??… an Attorney at Law ABOVE THE LAW??

    Our Honourable Prime Minister is an Attorney at Law;
    Our Honourable Attorney General is an Attorney at Law;
    Our Honourable Speaker of the House is an Attorney at Law.
    David Thompson, our ex Honourable Prime Minister and ex leader of the DEMOCRATIC LABOUR PARTY was an Attorney at Law .

    Thompson has been documented a money launderer, expert in tax evasion, and used his professional skills as a member of the Honourable Barbados Bar Association in the FRAUDULENT PREFERENCE OF CREDITORS of CLICO to the tune of $3,333,000.

    THOMPSON’S Last Will and Testament was sealed. WHY??. TO COVER UP SOMETHING? LIKE WHAT?
    It is rumoured that Thompsons estate was worth $36,000,000; THIRTY SIX MILLION DOLLARS. Do YOU happen to know if that is correct??

    That Thompson Will can be, and should be unsealed pursuant to the provisions of the PROCEEDS OF CRIME ACT. The good people of Barbados rely on the Attorney General, as they have relied on past Attorneys General; albeit while CLICO and BAICO were money laundering,

    Do you wonder why our Attorney General has not been pro active in ensuring that the provisions of the Proceeds of Crime Act have not been assiduously applied?
    Do you think that there may be a cover up by the Democratic Liars Party.??

    If the Proceeds of Crime Act provisions were to be enforced as they should be, could Mr Lawrence Dupre be extradited from the USA to Barbados and his BILLIONS OF DOLLARS be sequestered for the benefit of those whose lives have been shattered by unscrupulous, amoral, scum ?

    As a VERY honourable Attorney at Law and ex President of the Honourable Barbados Bar Association, as an Honourable Officer of the High Court with an obligation to promote Justice and effective operation of the judicial system, you know that you have an ethical duty to tell judges the truth and avoid dishonesty or evasion; like the location of documents.

    Did you incorporate Leroy Parris’ company PROFESSIONAL SERVICES?
    Did you incorporate BRANLEE, the money laundering company for the $3,333,000 that was a payment in fraudulent preference of the CLICO creditors. ?
    Please provide the good people of Barbados and other Caribbean islands, savers, parents, pensioners, honest workers who were defrauded of close to BDS $1,000,000,000 ( ONE BILLION DOLLARS) with an update on the above.

    All the missing records mentioned in the Forensic Audit Report; where are they? you must know? you were a Director?
    Are you worried that the RBPF may search your offices??