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Apsion v Dilnot & Ors (QB) - 10/04/13


The first applicant instructed a barrister on a direct access basis in the defence of a defamation claim. Dissatisfied with the services he disinstructed the barrister and instructed a solicitors firm to act who instructed another barrister. The applicant lodged a complaint about his first barrister with the Bar Standards Board. The Council of the Inns of Court's Disciplinary Tribunal found the barrister guilty of misconduct and that he had provided inadequate professional services and he was banned indefinitely from acting on a direct access basis. His appeal to the Visitors to the Inns of Court was unsuccessful. The barrister then brought applications against his former client, the firm and replacement barrister over several years with a central theme that the second barrister had fraudulently withheld from the disciplinary information relating to the underlying claim. The applications were refused, some as being totally without merit and costs orders were made which were not satisfied. A civil restraint order was made. This expired six months before the first barrister brought a claim for conspiracy to defraud. The second barrister, solicitors firm and former client sought to strike out the claim and to obtain an extended civil restraint order. The court held that the issues had already been determined and seeking to relitigate them was an abuse of process and the claim should be struck out. On the facts it was appropriate to make an extended civil restraint order lasting two years, but not a wider order. It was also appropriate to grant an injunction preventing harassment of the second barrister.


  • High Court (Queen's Bench Division)
  • Wednesday, 01 May 2013