News release

Former Gloucestershire coroner struck off

Gloucestershire solicitor Alan Crickmore, who also served the county as its coroner, has been struck off after taking money from clients of nearly £2 million.

Mr Crickmore, currently serving an eight-year sentence for the same fraud, was struck off by the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal (SDT) in a case brought by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA). As well as being struck off - meaning he can no longer work as a solicitor, Mr Crickmore was ordered to pay £66,000 costs.

The tribunal found that he mis-appropriated clients' funds and used them for his own benefit, withdrew and/or transferred monies from the client bank account other than as permitted, and took unfair advantage of a client. It also found that he failed to ensure compliance with the Solicitors' Accounts Rules, and failed to keep accounts properly written up.

Mr JC Chesterton, the chair of the panel, said: "This Tribunal rarely sees such conscious impropriety on such a scale over such a sustained period of time. It was undertaken by an experienced solicitor who held a judicial appointment and was a solicitor trustee and attorney.

"The damage to the reputation of the profession in the eyes of the public is grave. The public have the right to trust a solicitor to the ends of the earth. The public need to know that when there is a case such as this both the criminal law and this Tribunal will deal with the solicitor appropriately, and that the solicitors’ profession in general will make good the loss to victims insofar as the solicitor himself does not.”

Gordon Ramsay, SRA Director of Legal and Enforcement, added: "Mr Crickmore was put in a position of trust where he was supposed to protect the assets and interests of vulnerable clients, including money left in wills. He abused that trust, for his own personal gain, and today we've ensured he'll never be able to practise as a solicitor."

The SRA has already paid out more than £250,000 from its Compensation Fund to those who have suffered hardship as a result of Mr Crickmore's actions. Further information on the fund is available here:

More on the Compensation Fund

The tribunal will publish their decision in the next seven weeks. Mr Crickmore has 21 days from that publication to appeal the decision.

 
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