At least it wasn't a lawyer pretending to be a pilot.
An Australian pilot has been fined for pretending to be a lawyer.
Nathaniel Whitehall had flown Qantas planes for more than 20 years, but took early retirement in 2020 seeking to “move in a new direction” as a lawyer.
However, the former pilot's legal dreams failed to take off, when it was discovered that he was practising before he got his legal licence.
During his time as a fake lawyer, Whitehall had worked for a conveyancing business and prepared and witnessed family wills. He also represented a woman in a traffic infringement case, according to various news reports in Australia.
Whitehall pleaded guilty in a Sydney court to engaging in legal practice and advertising legal services, despite lacking the necessary qualifications.
Prosecutor David Viney said: “Unqualified people practising as solicitors place their clients in very difficult positions. If any of these matters caused harm or damages to clients then they would be in the position of not having insurance coverage.”
Whitehall, representing himself in the proceedings, argued that he did not gain or benefit anything from his fake identity. “I was, in some cases, just simply helping out a friend or a colleague,” he told the court.
The presiding magistrate felt that the ex-pilot lacked remorse. “The way the matter was run before the court does seem to indicate a lack of understanding as to the seriousness of the offending,” she said.
The court fined Whitehall $4,500 and sentenced him to a 12-month community correction order.