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Barrister fined for sending cocaine to chambers

Richard Keogh, who was called to the bar in 1991, has been reprimanded and fined by the Bar Standards Board [‘BSB’] after he “inadvertently” sent cocaine to a chambers in April 2018.

In May 2018, Mr Keogh subsequently accepted a police caution for possession of a class A drug, contrary to Section 5(2) of and Schedule 4 to the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971.

The BSB determined that Mr Keogh had committed professional misconduct by:-

  • Failing to act with integrity (in breach of Core Duty 3 of the Code of Conduct of the Bar of England and Wales);
  • Behaving in a way which was likely to diminish the trust and confidence which the public places in him or in the profession (in breach of Core Duty 5 of the Code of Conduct of the Bar of England and Wales); and
  • Behaving in a way which could reasonably be seen by the public to undermine his integrity (in breach of Rule C8 of the Code of Conduct of the Bar of England and Wales)

The BSB dealt with this offence by a “determination by consent” [‘DBC’].  A DBC is an alternative way of dealing with cases on the papers, which would normally be referred to a full disciplinary tribunal. The process involves the Professional Conduct Committee of the BSB determining what professional obligations have been breached and what sentence to impose. The respondent, in this case Mr Keogh, then has the opportunity to accept (which requires express written consent) or reject the Committee's finding(s) and sanction.

Mr Keogh was reprimanded and ordered to pay a fine in the sum of £750.00.


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