Category Archive Litigation

ByMichael Morrison

Recent Cases & News Round-Up

Crime

Hate crime has gone up by more than 20% London in the past year. The rise is due to world events but also due to the fact more people are prepared to make these complaints today. About 32,000 more crimes of a violent nature have been committed.

In July where a record number of faith hate offences were made 95% were anti-semitic in the aftermath of Gaza being invaded by Israel.

These revelations come on top of these further London crime statistics:-

Religion, racism and homophobia attacks are up dramatically               Faith related offences up 23% to 1048                                                       Violent hate crime up 21% to 1140                                                             Homophobic crime rose 21.5% = 100 cases a month with 175 reported in June alone                                                                               Transgender hate crime up 86.2%,  58 to 108 cases                               Disability hate crime up 12.5% and racist and religious up almost 20%. Crime in Haringey up 38%, Barnet 31%, Kensington & Chelsea 31%, Redbridge 29%, Hillingdon and Bromley about 28%, Kingston 7.5% and Ealing 10%

However only 43% of criminal incidents are thought to be reported.

The police said that since October they have attended nearly 5300 premises visits, 400 alcohol test purchases, seized 400 weapons in 5000 sweeps, 3000 out of 160000 stop and searches had positive results e.g. weapon retrieval.

A 25% rise in domestic violence charges  is likely to be made to April this year. There have been nearly 10,000 prosecutions from April to December this year which is up by more than 1000. The good news is that more than 65% have resulted in successful convictions with nearly 6500 either admitting/being found guilty over the last two quarters.

The UK taken as a whole paints a similar picture with just over 89,000 prosecutions expected by the first week of April, almost 20,000 more than the nearly 71,000 last year. A rise is rape proceedings is similarly reported.

Sexual violence has been described as being the worst in London for more than 30 years by the Metropolitan Police’s leading Commander.

Drinking whilst pregnant is not an offence

Three judges sitting in the Court of Appeal have recently ruled that if a woman drinks heavily during pregnancy and causes severe mental and/or physical deformity to her unborn child no criminal offence has been committed upholding an earlier ruling by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority.

Delayed birth delivery – £7,000,000 awarded by the High Court

A 6 year old boy suffering from quadriplegic cerebral palsy due to the lack of oxygen to his brain has won the above captioned award.

As he was in the breech position he was required to be delivered by Caesarean. However due to delays at the south east London hospital when his mother was actually attended to it was too late for it to be performed and a normal delivery ensued.

He will require the use of a wheelchair and is not expected to live beyond the age of 26.

Solicitors in London hope that proper training will be given to all maternity staff especially to sub-contracted midwives.

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ByMichael Morrison

Delayed Diagnosis £120,000 High Court Award

Chloe McCarthy a 12-year old born with a dislocated hip was awarded £120,000 by the High Court recently for her future care due to a hospital blunder which led to a delay in her diagnosis and treatment.

Due to the error caused by an East London hospital she had endured restricted leg movement, great pain and undertaken several bouts of surgery.

From birth she had suffered from developmental dysplasia of the hip which was only diagnosed in August 2002 after several administrative mistakes and therefore three months late. As a result she was unable to undergo a manipulation of the joint to realign it with the socket, a procedure known as an immediate closed reduction.

Her medical experts attest that she could have avoided any operations and a suspected hip replacement by the age of 40 and in fact made a complete recovery just by wearing a cast for a few months.

She was represented by solicitors in London.

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ByMichael Morrison

Banks Fined – Litigation Tsunami Expected

A tidal wave of civil litigation is in expected after City watchdog the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) fined five banks a total of £1.1bn for rigging the £3.4trn-a-day foreign exchange market (forex) on the 12th November.

The five – Citibank, HSBC, JP Morgan Chase, Royal Bank of Scotland and UBS – can all expect to be hit by claims from clients including pension funds, foreign property owners and other foreign exchange houses, according to solicitors in London who have been quietly lining up litigants for the last two years.

A vital component of any successful action will be proving that a bank behaved in such a way that it profited at the expense of its customers.

The FCA statement said: ‘It is completely unacceptable for firms to engage in attempts at manipulation for their own benefit and to the potential detriment of certain clients and other market participants. Our final notices include examples where each bank’s trading made a significant profit.’

The final notices also all contain references to collusion between traders at different banks using online messaging and chatrooms. The FCA cites one example of such chatroom manipulation which netted Citibank a profit of £62,581 and another in which HSBC banked £102,425.

The notices could prove a boon for those bringing cases because they also contain examples of traders congratulating themselves after successfully manipulating forex rates. This, from one UBS trader, is typical: ‘The best fix of my UBS career’ – after he used a chatroom to move rates to produce a profit for £328,100 for UBS.

Chancellor George Osborne has said a share of the fines will be taken by the Treasury and ’used for the wider public good’.

Tracey McDermott, the FCA’s director of enforcement and financial crime, said: ‘Firms could have been in no doubt, especially after Libor, that failing to take steps to tackle the consequences of a free for all culture on their trading floors was unacceptable. This is not about having armies of compliance staff ticking boxes. It is about firms understanding, and managing, the risks their conduct might pose to markets.

‘Where problems are identified we expect firms to deal with those quickly, decisively and effectively and to make sure they apply the lessons across their business. If they fail to do so they will continue to face significant regulatory and reputational costs.’

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