'I know you were expecting a mini-pupillage, but check out this dope robe.'
An aspiring barrister allegedly stole almost £30,000 from a charity and then splashed the cash on luxury items including a Versace dressing gown and a sauna.
The unnamed lawyer was a committee member for Bridging the Bar, which enables students from non-traditional backgrounds to gain experience with barristers, and which has formed links with several sets to facilitate mentoring and mini-pupillages.
The charity announced in a statement that during the summer it realised one of its committee members had transferred “significant funds” from Bridging the Bar’s bank account to their own personal account “without proper authorisation”.
The charity said the money was returned promptly, and that the Committee member involved was “removed permanently from office”.
“Systems have also been strengthened, including the requirement for multiple trustees to authorise any financial transaction, to ensure that no individual has access to or control of charitable funds”, it said, adding that the Charity Commission had been notified. RollOnFriday understands that the police have also been notified.
As part of the committee member’s noble quest to increase representation at the Bar for ethnic minorities and the less well off, they allegedly bought themselves a Versace dressing gown, magnums of champagne, Gucci shirts and a sauna, the Times reported, which at least adds up to a fantastic evening in, if not a convincing argument in mitigation.
Coincidentally, a committee member whose profile recently vanished from Bridging the Bar’s website has also deleted their Twitter account and removed any mention of their position at the charity from their LinkedIn profile. The individual did not respond to a request for comment.