LAWFUEL – The Legal Newswire – See ‘Hot Gossip’ – When British entrepreneur Philip Green took a £9 billion run at retailer Marks & Spencer in 2004 Freshfields finance partner Barry O’Brien, 54, agreed to act for Green’s consortium despite the fact that M&S was a Freshfields client. Big mistake.
Yesterday The UK Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal ordered O’Brien to pay £9,000 in fines in addition to paying the Law Society’s costs for breaching the solicitors’ code of conduct. O’Brien must pay £5,000 for failing to act in his client Marks & Spencer’s best interest, and was fined £4,000 for bringing the law profession into disrepute. O’Brien is currently a consultant at the firm, retiring last year from the equity to take advantage of the old pension scheme that has now been phased out. The fine shouldn’t be a problem. The stain will be harder to remove.