|For immediate release||June 20, 2001|
Law Society of B.C. disciplines lawyers
VANCOUVER – Pursuant to its statutory duty to govern B.C.'s legal profession in the public interest, the Law Society of B.C. has disciplined the following lawyers (the lawyer's year of call to the B.C. Bar appears in parentheses):
Gary Norman Arthur Botting (1991), of Victoria, was found guilty of professional misconduct for representing to a B.C. Supreme Court Master that opposing counsel in matrimonial litigation had consented to Mr. Botting's client having supervised access to the parties' child when counsel had not consented. Mr. Botting was also found guilty of professional misconduct for advising the Law Society during an investigation that he had not so advised the B.C. Supreme Court Master. A hearing panel ordered that Mr. Botting be suspended for 90 days. Mr. Botting has not practised law since November 1998 and has been a non-practising member of the Law Society since October 1999.
Patrick Doyle Angly (1983), of Vancouver, admitted his failure to pay an account in a timely fashion constituted professional misconduct. A hearing panel ordered that he be reprimanded, pay a $2,000 fine and pay $1,000 in costs.
Martin Drew Johnson (1977), of Kelowna, applied for a review of a one-month suspension and costs imposed on him by a hearing panel in February 2001 for professional misconduct consisting of shouting at another lawyer and physical contact with the other lawyer. On review before a nine-member panel, a majority of Benchers confirmed the penalty.
Michael Joseph Kierans (1980), of the Czech Republic, applied for a review of his disbarment imposed on him by a hearing panel in November 1999 for misappropriating client funds. On review before an eight-member panel, the Benchers unanimously confirmed the disbarment. Mr. Kierans ceased practising law in March 1996 and was a non-practising member of the Law Society until his disbarment.
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The Law Society of B.C. was founded in 1869 and is the governing body of the legal profession in B.C. It is an independent organization funded by dues paid by all B.C. lawyers. Under the provisions of the Legal Profession Act, the Law Society is responsible for the licensing, professional conduct and discipline of the more than 10,000 lawyers in B.C.
The Law Society is governed by 31 directors who are known as "Benchers." Twenty-five of the Benchers are elected by lawyers from among the profession. In addition, the provincial government appoints six non-lawyers as Benchers to ensure the public interest is represented in all Law Society decisions. The Law Society's authorized spokespersons are its president, Richard Margetts, Q.C. and its executive director, James G. Matkin.
For more information on the regulation and discipline of lawyers see The Legal Profession Act:
- Section 3: Law Society duty to protect the public.
- Part 4: Discipline
The Legal Profession Act is available on the Law Society of B.C. website here or the B.C. government's website at http://www.qp.gov.bc.ca/statreg.
The Law Society of B.C. makes the following documents available to the media in discipline matters:
- Hearing report
- Penalty report
- Discipline Digest and Discipline Case Digest
Discipline hearings are generally open to the public; please check with the Law Society prior to the hearing if you wish to attend. A list of upcoming hearings is available on the Law Society's website.
Law Society of B.C. media contact:
Brad Daisley, Public Affairs Manager
Office: 604-443-5724 or 1-800-903-5300 toll-free in B.C.