If the recent court cases involving ACS:Law weren’t enough proof that sending accused filesharers demands for settlement fees wasn’t a discredited model in the UK, here’s more evidence. Two lawyers formerly engaged in the process at Davenport Lyons have been fined £20,000 each, suspended for three months and ordered to pay interim costs of £150,000 by the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal. David Gore, who still works at the company, and former partner Brian Miller have been found guilty of six breaches of their industry’s Code of Conduct for sending more than 6,000 letters to accused filesharers between 2006 and 2009 on behalf of rightsholder clients.
Consumer body Which? triggered the investigation with a complaint that their actions amounted to bullying. “Some of those affected were vulnerable members of the public,” a spokesperson for the Solicitors Regulation Authority says. “There was significant distress. We are pleased that this matter has been brought to a conclusion and hope that it serves as a warning to others.” Davenport Lyons has protested that the decision and punishment are “totally unjustified”, promising to appeal and claiming that “The steps we took on behalf of our clients were for the protection of their legitimate legal rights.” Source: Law Gazette