The Legal Services Obudsman, Zahida Manzoor, the official lawyers 'Protection Agent'.
Solicitors from Hell
30 May 2006
Re: Richard Hegarty, Chair of the Compliance Board
Thank you for your letter dated 17 May 2006 which gives the impression that when I wrote to the Chair of the Compliance Board (4th Aug '03) I was asking for him to "act as some sort of appeal process" if you read that letter and my reply to his eventual response I only asked a single question: -
I have come 'full-circle' may be you could answer for him bearing in
mind your remarks in the case of
a woman where rule 15 was ignored "ludicrous" and
"things have got to change" also I'm sure you will
recall your 'promises' and 'undertakings' in Parliament on 4th May 2004;
With reference to page 2, 3rd paragraph of your letter concerning the period between the CCS receiving your report on the 18 January 2005 and their reply to me 18 January 2006, for 9 of these 12 months my file was held by your office, you say you was corresponding with me with regard to "concerns you raised triggered by my report". I wrote to you on the 28 Feb, 5 Apr and 30 April 2005 you wrote to me on 18 April and 27 May 2005, both these letters told me in no uncertain terms that my complaint against Thos Boyd Whyte was closed and would stay closed there was no mention of my complaint against Richard Hegarty. If such letters do exist that relate to Richard Hegarty would you send them to me, if not, once again fictitious letters are being talked about. You will recall I only received a response from the CCS after I sent a copy of a letter I received from them to your solicitors Mace & Jones.
The main part of my complaint, as you know, concerns the content of Richard Hegarty's evening 'phone call which you and the CCS say was made for the purpose of carrying out Law Society business. If this is true surely there will be a telephone 'Attendance Note' written by him at the time in existence? My version, substantiated by evidence written at the time, is Richard Hegarty first of all asked my partner if that was Hawley Gun Club then asked for me by name. When I came to the telephone he, with an immediate intimidating attitude, made threats that the contents of my website that related to him were 'inflammatory' and if I did not remove them instantly he would take High Court action which would cost me substantially. As I recorded at the time I was shocked, taken aback and disturbed for days. Being lost for words, as you said, I brought the call to an abrupt end.
To substantiate my version I once again enclose a copy of a letter sent to my hosting company from Willoughby & Partners Solicitors acting for Richard Hegarty/Law Society which pressurised my hosting company to close me down. If you read this solicitors' letter it clearly substantiates my version of that telephone conversation to be accurate also if you read the enclosed copy of an e-mail from Google you will see I was successfully removed from their Search Engines. Bearing in mind Richard Hegarty was 'conducting Law Society business' then it is clear the Law Society are restricting 'Freedom of Speech' of any solicitor's client that dares to complain. To further substantiate my version of that 'phone call I have enclosed a copy of a letter I sent to my ex-hosting company which clearly shows Richard Hegarty's 'beef' with me was about 'defamatory' remarks about Richard Hegarty & Co Solicitors made by me on my website and nothing to do with any "issue" that he the CCS or you say I had "raised". You will recall that Richard Hegarty rang me at 6.15pm on 6th November 2003 and will notice all the enclosed related correspondence is dated May/June 2004, after that 'phone call.
In your report you said Richard Hegarty should be asked for his version of that 'phone call which the CCS stated related to an "issue" which I had "raised" (telephone 'Attendance Notes' written by Richard Hegarty at the time, where are they???). It would appear Richard Hegarty eventually gave, or to use the CCS's word, "indicated" the reason and the content of his call. I mentioned in previous correspondence that this evidence should be sent to me, further more under the Freedom of Information Acts, using the correct procedure (signed letter), I asked for a copy of his reply and I was told by the CCS that the Law Society are 'exempt' from the Freedom of Information Acts which they say means they don't have to and will not give me a copy of Richard Hegarty's reply, you have upheld the CCS's right to withhold this evidence. What the law states is "When a public body is investigating a complaint all evidence must be available for all concerned". Clearly the Law Society have violated the law and misused their rights to their exemption from the Freedom of Information Acts. As you have allowed them to misuse the rules and ignore the law in their investigation this must amount to a dereliction of a duty of care in seeing that the investigation into my complaint was carried out correctly, transparently and in an 'unbiased' fashion.
At this point, as the law states I have the right to all evidence supplied by Richard Hegarty just as he has the right to view any from me, I would once more request all correspondence, Attendance Notes etc relating to telephone conversations etc to be sent to me. I have given a detailed version of my account of that telephone call with supporting evidence, by law the same must be done in Richard Hegarty's case which I will expect to be sent to me.
Furthermore you asked the question if Richard Hegarty had a legitimate right to possess my company name also how he obtained my telephone number which would raise the question of the Law Society's method of obtaining information on clients/complainants. Answers have not been given to your own questions from your report which one would have expected, is this another 'cover-up' to protect the Chair of the Compliance Board?
I have enclosed a copy of a letter written by Amanda Malloy at the CCS which shows that under the Law Society rules the investigation into my complaint should have been carried out by an independent solicitor which in the first instance appeared was going to be the case but with some tampering of the rules by the CCS and probably Richard Hegarty it was not even referred to the Intervention and Disciplinary Unit. If the rules had been complied with the collusion that clearly took place between you (LSO) and the CCS during 18th January 2005 and 18th January 2006 would not have occurred also the evidence from Richard Hegarty would have been made available to me, as my right by law.
You have told me on numerous occasions that your primary role is to ensure that the Law Society carries out their investigations within the Law Society rules and the law. There was clear collusion between you and the CCS, you allowed the CCS to ignore the Law Society's own rules and to break the law by not supplying evidence during the course of their investigation then refusing to supply that evidence when it was requested.
Finally the CCS said, by way of making an excuse for that 'phone call, that I invited Richard Hegarty to telephone me which you have repeated in your letter. I have enclosed a copy of the letter I sent to the CCS asking where I invited him to ring me, would you please either answer for them or get them to respond to that letter for I most dearly want to know how and where I 'invited' that 'phone call.