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17 April 2004

Mr John Squire
Compliance Officer
The Information Commissioner Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane

Your ref: 04/46450/09

Dear Sir

Re: Data Protection Act

To keep you informed of all developments and/or correspondence between myself and the Information Compliance Manager (Data Controller?) I am enclosing a copy of a letter I have received. From this letter it appears I am being told that Complainants' complaints files do not come under the Data Protection Acts? This, as I read the rules, does not appear to be correct.

I enclose a copy of a letter (Document A15 I previously sent to you) that I wrote to Lord Falconer which in my opinion, shows that a violation of the Law Society's Data Protection Notice is an automatic violation of the Data Protection Acts.

What should an individual do if they are not satisfied that their information has been processed as stated by the Law Society rulebook:
"If you believe that the data controller is not processing in accordance with your rights you should ensure that you have made every effort to resolve this direct with the individual or organization concerned"???

It appears to me from the letter I received from the Data Controller that the Law Society can pass information from complainants' files to anybody they wish with complete impunity, in fact they can use complaints files as a sort of 'Criminal Data Bank' for members of the Law Society's personal use and you have no control at all.

I am enclosing a copy of my reply to Mr Stanley, Information Compliance Manager's letter dated 1 April for your information and again if you read the rules;
Handling of requests for information
A request for information shall be acknowledged by or on behalf of the Chief
Executive within 14 days of its receipt.

As you can see it took 28 days to reply to my 'request' for information and I am told the '40 working days' for a 'reasonable reply' will only begin when they receive my returned application. Lord Falconer tells me the Data Controller is governed by a "set of enforceable rules"?? I always believed the 'rule book' was a 'two way street', but, Oh no, the only "enforceable rules" are the ones the Law Society stuff down any complainant's throat for their own benefit.

Yours faithfully

X X Xxxx