7 September 2004

Mr Jonathan Gray Compliance Officer
The Information Commissioner Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane

Your ref: RFA0029621

Dear Sir

Re: Data Protection Act

Thank you for your letter dated 19 August. Concerning the complaints form, I thought I returned it with my letter of the 1 July last, obviously not.

Let me make two points;
You fail to grasp the point or you are deliberately ignoring the fact that Richard Hegarty, although you say he is as one with the Data Controller, did not collect my personal details which he used for his own personal use from the Law Society Data Controller (OSS/CCS), he collected them illegally over the telephone from a private law firm from copies of my confidential client's file. Firstly the law firm who supplied information from my client's file have breached the **'Confidentiality' rules and the Law Society, who have deviated from the laid down investigation procedures when a complaint is made against a member of the Law Society Board (in my case Richard Hegarty), have refused to name that firm and second, Richard Hegarty must know he was aiding and abetting a breach of the 'Confidentiality' rule and as Chair of the Compliance Board must be guilty of serious Professional Misconduct.
You say the Data Controller had the right to 'reveal' information to my solicitors, yes that is correct but only within the confines of their investigations into my complaint then only information to be used in relation to my complaint and not prior to the investigation. In this case the information was 'requested' (a word that is not used by the Law Society's rules concerning complaint files) by my solicitors before the investigation had begun and the Law Society's 'Data Protection Notice' does not say solicitors have the right to 'r-e-q-u-e-s-t' information from a complainants file before, during or after the investigation. This information that was gained and used for my solicitors personal benefit in violation of the Law Society rules, which include those concerning the procedures for the 'requesting' and 'collection' of information, was passed over the telephone to a third party to seek advice on sacking me. The Law Society rules clearly state "We will not use that information for any unconnected purpose without your consent".
**A quote from the "Client's Charter" under the heading 'A solicitor will':- "keep what you tell them confidential", a solicitors client would not expect their solicitors (ex or otherwise) to give out information from his/her file(s) to anybody to be used for a third party's personal use. What it appears the IC is saying is that members of the Law Society Board have the right to 'telephone' any law firm and collect information from clients' files and can use this information in any way they like (which is what Richard Hegarty did). In the case of the Law Society the IC is enforcing their right not to give me information from my complaints file because it is "not part of a relevant filing system" as established by a court ruling. In my case you are bending and twisting the meanings of what the rules say i.e. the IC has given the word "revealed" a meaning of 'requested' and the Law Society rule states;
All requests for information in accordance with this Code shall be in writing, addressed to the Chief Executive, and shall be signed by the person making
the request.
The IC is saying that in the case of the Law Society information can be collected for their personal/private use from any source within the Law Society by 'unsecured' means (data can be given out over the telephone to people where there is no proof of ID) and client/complainants files, in the case of the Law Society when collecting information, suddenly are not "part of a relevant filing system". It seems to me that the IC is giving preferential treatment to the Law Society, if you access www.solicitorsfromhell.com/ombudsman3.htm#zahida you will see Zahida Manzoor (remember her past roll with the NHS) gave 'preferential' treatment to a woman who was in an identical situation to myself.

If you look at document A9 from the file I sent you on 18 February last a letter, that was one of many, I wrote to OSS dated 4 September '02 where I complain bitterly about the 'misuse' of my file which at that time should have been held by the OSS Data Controller in a 'secure' environment. If you also look at a document marked A5 in that file you will see this information that was 'requested' from an 'unopened file, by my solicitors that was 'unrelated' to my complaint, was 'illegally' given over the telephone by the OSS to my solicitors who then passed this 'unrelated' information, again over the 'phone, to the Ethics Committee (Doc. A5) who advised them there was an 'Inherent Conflict of Interests'. Yeah Right, and ?ula ?itzpatrick didn't bother to tell the Ethics Committee that Gordon Luckhurst, Senior Partner, had three times refused to comply with the Client Care Agreement. Maybe the IC would like, as he appears to know without any investigation why Richard Hegarty rang me at home during the evening, too hazard a guess as to why the OSS refused to investigate or give answers to this part of my complaint?

By the Law Society's rules and the IC's rules I should have been informed and/or my permission asked for at the time that unrelated information to my complaint was collected from my file, but as you know I was not and when I did 'request' information (that at the time I should have been informed of) using the correct procedures, my file is suddenly "not part of a relevant filing system" which the IC agreed with. I fail to see how the IC upholds the OSS's right to not give me information that I 'requested' then fails to uphold my right to be informed and my permission sought when information from my file is used for unrelated purposes to my complaint. It appears complainants cannot request/collect information from their files before, during or after an investigation into their complaint(s), but in the case of members of the Law Society all files are an 'open book' at all times and for their benefit the 'rule book' doesn't apply.

In my file document A11 is a letter I wrote to the LSO dated 10 June 03, on page 2 top paragraph you can see the LSO states, "there is no evidence to support collusion" (that is between the OSS and my solicitors). Evidence in the file I sent you on the 18 February last shows that on 7 June 2000 ?ula ?itzpatrick telephoned a Mr Fise at the OSS to 'r-e-q-u-e-s-t' (not 'revealed' in the normal course of an investigation) information from my complaints file that was 'pending investigation' he 'leafed' through the pages and passed information to ?ula ?itzpatrick which was, after being discussed with two other Solicitors, subsequently passed on to the Ethics Committee. All the rules, concerning 'collection' and 'purpose', had been ignored and as this was all carried out using information from my file that was 'unrelated' to my complaint, obtained without my consent and used without my knowledge for as documents A4 & A5 show ?ula ?itzpatrick my Solicitor, Geoff Smith the Senior Litigation Solicitor, Gordon Luckhurst the Senior Partner and the Ethics Committee discussed this illegally gained information from the OSS to bring about my sacking. By no stretch of the imagination can these members of the Law Society claim they acted 'ethically' correct not by ignoring the rules (remember your own rule: - "If someone wants to use your information for another purpose…you should be told about it and given a choice" I was not "told" or "given a choice") can it be called anything less than a 'conspiracy'. Maybe the IC, once again, might have an idea as to why the OSS and Zahida Manzoor refused to investigate what went on? If you access; www.solicitorsfromhell.com/ombudsman3.htm#zahida read, then click 'Ludicrous' you will see Zahida Manzoor treats the male species much less favourably than the female species. What is the Information Commissioners excuse for applying rules one way and not the other?

It might be appropriate, at this point, for me to quote a French Jurist;
Charles Louis Montesquieu: (1689-1755)
"When I go to a country, I do not look to see whether there are good laws, but whether those there are enforced, for good laws are everywhere".

By the Law Society's own rules Gordon Luckhurst is guilty of 'Professional Misconduct' for failing to comply with the 'Client Care Agreement' and Richard Hegarty by illegally collecting information from an independent law firm (possibly Gordon Luckhurst) for his personal use and then telephoning me in an attempt to intimidate me must be guilty of serious 'Professional Misconduct'. In your letter dated 21 June '04 you were of the opinion Richard Hegarty rang me to 'address' an 'issue' which I had 'raised'? If you read my reply dated 1 July '04 2nd page 2nd paragraph I asked you what that 'issue' was, you failed to answer, obviously their was no 'issue' that you could find.

I have listened to and read with great interest the Information Commissioner's views on the proposed ID Cards and note his concern with the collection and possible 'misuse' of data. I have to smile when I consider his views regarding the security and use of information held by the Law Society.

Finally I note from your complaints form I can complain to the Parliamentary Ombudsman, depending on your reply I will if I consider I have not been given equality by the IC with the Law Society and the rules applied as written I will most definitely contact my MP to take my complaint to the PO. I note the Law Society rules are made with the concurrence of the Master of the Rolls if as I believe the IC is not applying the rules as they are written I will write to him and I'm sure he will love his name splattered all over my web site.

Please find enclosed Office of the Information Commissioner: Complaint Form.

Yours sincerely