Solicitor faces being struck off for turning blind eye

A Liverpool lawyer who turned a blind eye to money laundering  faces being struck off by the solicitors’ watchdog.

Andrew Tidd, 52, will appear before the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal accused of  “failure to uphold the rule of law and the proper administration of justice”.

The solicitor, who worked for Yaffe Jackson Ostrin in Tuebrook  was convicted of failing to  report suspicions of money laundering last year. He had acted as solicitor for  Nevzat Kocabey, 50, who bought a house from East Lancashire fraudster Mohammed Khatana in 2007 using  proceeds  of  crime cash.

Tidd was instructed in the £105,000 purchase of Hawks House Gardens, Brierfield, near Burnley, despite it being investigated by detectives under the Proceeds of Crime Act.  The lawyer  was also enlisted to secure the purchase of a £72,500 house in Lemon Grove, Toxteth.

 Police enquiries revealed Kocabey had using dirty money to pay the £26,000 deposits on both properties.

Tidd, of Hatfield Gardens, Warrington, was given a four-month suspended prison sentence by Burnley Crown Court.

He was then investigated by the Solictors Regulation Authority on allegations of misconduct.

The SRA confirmed it had now referred the case to the independent Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal, which has the power to ban Tidd from practising.

The watchdog said there “is a case to answer” on allegations Tidd “failed to uphold the rule of law and the proper administration of justice” and “failed to act with integrity and behaved in a way that is likely to diminish the trust the public places in him”.

The SRA added: “The allegations are subject to a hearing before the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal and are as yet unproven.“

 Kocabey, 50, of Lemon Grove, Toxteth, was  found guilty of two counts of transferring criminal property in August last year following a three-year investigation by the North West Regional Organised Crime Unit (TITAN).

He was jailed for two years.

Khatana, 51, of Brierfield, Nelson, was jailed for eight-and-a-half years after pleading guilty to 15 counts of fraud.

No date has yet been set for Tidd’s tribunal hearing.

Share post