Ready to fight his corner.

Pragnesh Modhwadia is “co-operating fully” with the Solicitors Regulation Authority, according to his lawyer, although he would not comment on the whereabouts of the tens of millions of pounds that have gone missing from his client’s firm. 

RollOnFriday revealed last week that the High Court had granted Axiom Ince a freezing injunction and preservation order against its former Managing Partner after at least £64m was found to have vanished from its client account.

When the SRA intervened to close down Modhwadia's practice and the practices of two other Axiom Ince partners, a spokesperson for the firm said the intervention was due to “the misappropriation by Pragnesh of very significant sums of money”. 

Modhwadia's lawyer, Timur Rustem of Rustem Guardian, told ROF that “from our perspective at the moment he's basically cooperating fully with the SRA”.

Rustem said Modhwadia was also co-operating with Devonshires, which is acting for Axiom Ince, and confirmed that, contrary to speculation, his client was still in the country. “There’s never been an issue with that, we’ve been on record since the beginning both with Devonshires and the SRA, openly engaging with them”, he said.

Rustem also highlighted the oddness arising from Modhwadia’s continuing ownership of Axiom Ince: “People forget this is his company. He owns the company and ultimately the individuals who instructed Devonshires effectively work for him”.

And now, against him. Devonshires convinced the High Court there was sufficient evidence to make Modhwadia subject to a preservation order forbidding him from disposing of or dealing with “at least £64,584,904.60 paid away” from Axiom’s client account since May 2021.

The order required Modhwadia to disclose how much of the missing money he still possessed, and what had happened to “such of those monies as were previously, but are no longer, in [his] possession or control”.

Modhwadia has “provided information as required under the initial order”, said Rustem, although he added that “we have our own concerns and there will be some issues that will be dealt with” at the hearing on Tuesday.

Asked whether Modhwadia would be taking any legal action in relation to the allegations against him, other than addressing the preservation order, freezing injunction, and the SRA intervention, Rustem said, “We simply want to try to resolve the problems for what is otherwise a very successful company which should continue trading”. 

“It’s the manner in which it’s been dealt with that causes us concern”, he said, suggesting that it have been better for stakeholders in the business if the black hole in the accounts had remained a private matter until it could be filled in.

“We’d have preferred these matters to be investigated and dealt with before matters were so publicly aired”, said Rustem, as “There is a level of damage that’s going to be caused to the business’s reputation and can potentially affect jobs and clients’ confidence in the firm”.

Restoring Axiom Ince’s reputation should be as easy as finding £64 million, although Rustem said he could not comment on where it was. There “is still so much that's being dealt with and investigated” and matters were at a “very early stage”, he said.

Meanwhile, his firm appears to be on a cliff edge. Or slightly over it. According to a source, associates were advised this week to seek other jobs. Another insider said that staff were sent an email out of hours on Thursday night "effectively telling us the end is nigh". Asked to comment on those assertions, Axiom Ince delayed providing a response to ROF's queries, then did not give one.  

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Tip Off ROF


Billy dog 08 September 23 09:11

Pay up and give the people what' they are owed stop trying to get out of ur commitments . staff all In limbo and no comment  made by any one at axiom .

Anonymous 08 September 23 09:31

£64m million missing from the client account. WTAF. The police should be involved, not the SRA. This can't also just be an issue with the top man - it should serious brown trouser time for anyone working in their accounts department.

Anonymous 2 08 September 23 09:37

Agree with anonymous above. Where is Johnny Metliss, erstwhile chairman? He doesn’t normally shrink from publicity, so come on JM. Let’s have some words of comfort. 

Cover up 08 September 23 09:55

This is a complete coverup. The SRA are to blame for letting this idiot acquire two firms recently. Now they don’t want to take control of axiom as it’s too big (wonder why) and SRA don’t have the money or man power so eveyone find a life jacket, leave and whatever is left ….to the bottom of the sea. 

I really do hope that this man pays the price for the lives that he has ruined. 

Curious 08 September 23 10:06

What’s going to happen to Ince? Their employees? Seems to be little coverage on that, or is it just because everything is business as usual, till it’s not?

What a mess 08 September 23 10:15

You can bet Pragnesh's lawyers will challenge every action that the partners of Axiom have taken against Prags as the company is owned by him. The bottom line is about £64m is missing, lives have been turned upside down and Prags will now rely on the skills of a very tactical lawyer to duck and dive and hide behind every inconsistency they can find to get him out of this mess. He may even succeed to an extent especially when you have the wholly incompetent SRA involved who clearly are out of their depth. But remember  karma never loses an address!

How? HOW?!?! Like, actually. 08 September 23 10:35

One thing springs to mind and some input would be welcomed.


In my experience, across working at 5 firms (including The Artist Formerly Known As Plexus), there are typically processes in place that would effectively make it impossible for 64p missing from the client account being overlooked. Every last penny is painstakingly accounted for as a regulatory requirement, and rightly so.


Bearing that in mind... how the actual fuck could it be possible for SIXTY FOUR MILLION POUNDS to have been merrily absconded from the client account? How were no alarms raised? If alarms were raised, what were the explanations given, who accepted them and why were they accepted?


It's all so mind-boggling. I hope it gets made into a TV drama one day, really. The scandal of it all!


It's much easier to feel that way now that I've hopped out of the furnace, mind...

Not a Fat Cat 08 September 23 10:39

Rob a bank for £5000 - go to jail for life. [Allegedly acquire] client account for £64 million holiday in Dubai.

Defund the SRA 08 September 23 10:40

So the SRA are asleep at the wheel when a managing partner [allegedly acquires] client money but they would jump at the chance to strike off a trainee for making a typo?

Hugh Jarse Esq 08 September 23 11:13

Points/facts to note about this sad tale of woe...

The SRA have no appetite or resources to have intervened in Axiom Ince Ltd. They made that expressly clear to the board. Prags would have known or at least guessed that this would be the case.  The SRA are all fart and no sh**e when dealing with this scale of client account blagging. And they know it.  Now... so does everyone else.

The SRA gave Prags a clean bill of health to buy Plexus even though they were investigating him for, arguably the biggest trousering of client account funds in history.  See the point above!

All the quality partners and associates of Axiom Ince Ltd (sorry, but read Ince & Co) have already left the building as have the files.  There are so many leaving dos, I have had to buy (almost) a new wardrobe. 

Sadly the journey for Axiom Ince Ltd is finished. There really is no firm left to sell to any decent outfit.  It's a calamity that should have been reasonably foreseeable when the 'pretendy' board, with their eyes wide shut allowed Prags total control of the finances, without, as it would now appear, any challenge whatsoever.  The Nuremberg defence will not apply here.  f you step up to a leadership role, then lead. To the board, still in their armoured bunker and still hiding from the lower ranks, your ship of fail has now arrived. To ROF..., please keep these board incompetents squarely within your cross hairs and ride them like the Blackpool donkeys that they are. 

To Prags in Northern Cyprus,  get the Fasolada and some ice cold ones in.  I will see you, at Bellapais at 8pm.  Namaste all 🙏 







Coffers 08 September 23 11:19

"Rustem also highlighted the oddness arising from Modhwadia’s continuing ownership of Axiom Ince: “People forget this is his company. He owns the company and ultimately the individuals who instructed Devonshires effectively work for him”."


roffer1 08 September 23 11:34

To those good, decent lawyers who remain at the Firm, please resist the urge to wallow in this truly awful predicament. The time to act is now - I've heard that Partners at other firms are keen to capitalise on the situation because they will be able to hire high calibre lawyers without paying a recruiter's fee (they're all heart, aren't they).

Tiny Stockpile 08 September 23 11:36

Not even a year since the SRA failed to intervene Metamorph, how the hell have they allowed a similar collapse that is even more serious to happen?

Anonymous 08 September 23 11:46

What would you do with £64m do you think?

I start to run out of ideas for it all beyond about £30m.

Like, how many parties on yachts with scantily glad women* who squealed loudly when you sprayed them with champagne could you really go to before the ennui set in?



*Instagram models who are definitely not hookers and its misogynist for you to suggest it. Stop being jealous of their success.

Vragtes 08 September 23 12:17

A former colleague of mine left private practice to work at the SRA as a caseworker. She was surprised at how few legally qualified staff were employed and virtually no one who had been in private practice.She has since left.

The SRA, set up with great fanfare, and whose top executives had arrived largely from non-legal quangos, full of marketing, gobbledygook and catchphrases has shown itself to be incapable of pursuing anybody other than sole practitioners and small practices. The Kafka-esque nightmare continues! 

Anonymous 08 September 23 12:37

@How? HOW?!?! Like, actually,10:35

Because Prags was COLP, HOFA, Managing Partner, sole owner and surrounded by a group of toadying yes men.

He would have declared himself Princess of Dragonstone, Queen of the Seven Kingdoms, Pragnesh Stormborn, the Unburnt, Queen of Meereen, Queen of the Andals and the Rhoynar and the First Men, Khaleesi of Great Grass Sea, Breaker of Shackles, and Mother of Dragons Lord of the Seven Kingdoms Protector of the Realm if he thought he could.

Anonymous 08 September 23 12:50

You owe your firm £1,000, you have a problem.

You owe your firm £64m, they have a problem!

What a mess 08 September 23 12:51

Anonymous 08 September 23 11:46 - scantily glad women* - what does Prags' Mrs say about this?

Anon 08 September 23 12:55

You owe your firm £1,000, you have a problem.

You owe your firm £64m, they have a problem! 08 September 23 13:06

What is actually happening to what was Plexus in all of this?

Are they just forgotten - who actually owns them? 

roffer1 08 September 23 13:09

Pragnesh Stormborn, LOL.

I can see him sitting astride one of his dragons, which will destroy SRA HQ with its fire-breathing ways.

Anonymous 08 September 23 13:19

This is money which was taken from "CLIENT ACCOUNT". Contrary to Rustem's comments, he has not simply taken money which would otherwise be owed to him. This is straightforward theft. 

What a mess 08 September 23 13:24

Anonymous 08 September 23 12:37 - I may sound naive here and please forgive me if I do - but (I'm guessing) when money allegedly went missing from client accounts did this not ring alarm bells in the accounts department? Or was Prags so intimidating that no one dare challenge him? Surely, surely the accounts teams would have been talking and the other partners would have heard whispers - especially if this started in 2021.  Surely, there would have been suspicion that something was very wrong? Are the other partners so brain dead and a partner in name only that they sat back and let this happen?

Anonymous 08 September 23 13:49

(singing to his wife)

"Will you still neeed me, will you still feeed me, when they come for the sixty four?"

Jórvíkspectator 08 September 23 13:58

Pragnesh Modhwadia was obviously capable of emanating great charm to his colleagues and business associates , and was presumably comfortably well-off,  and so one has to look to see the reasons why such a person would go to such lengths to destroy their own reputation by engaging in such behaviour and this article from California is instructive

The article references the work of the criminologist Dr. Donald Cressey who is considered the founder of the modern study of organized crime. He began asking the question and looking for the answers in his 1950 dissertation for his PhD in criminology. Fascinated by embezzlers, he wondered why most people that committed fraud were “good people” and not criminals. So what, he wondered, happens to them that turns them into criminals?

The article states that “ his research study titled, “People’s Money: A Study in Social Psychology of Embezzlement” in 1953, established the model still used today to explain why people commit fraud in the workplace. His theory would become known as the Fraud Triangle. It established the three factors:

Pressure/Incentive—The embezzler has to be under some type of financial pressure or incentive. It could be gambling, a drug or shopping addiction, or simply having taken on too much debt. It could also be that they are living a lifestyle beyond their means and accumulating material goods that they cannot afford. And then there are the employees seeking payback or an employer is not treating them with respect or fairly.

Opportunity—The embezzler sees what they perceive to be an opportunity and one that they can exploit and keep secret. The key is to circumvent internal controls and develop a scheme to exploit them. Using others’ identities without their knowledge on Electronic Banking Cards was how one local county employee allegedly managed to steal up to $1.5 million. But the most common schemes involve creating false invoices or transaction, forgery or unauthorized issuance of company checks.

Rationalization—Cressey found that most people who commit fraud in the workplace have no criminal past and are first-time offenders.

The article continues: “The motivation for men who embezzle seems to be that they typically needed money as a result of individual problems brought on by their own behavior, often money spent on women, cars, and attempts to impress others. According to Cressey, here again, male subjects often rationalized their crimes by telling themselves that they “were only borrowing” the money.”

The article goes on to quote Mr. Dana Turner, a security practitioner who runs a research, consulting and training firm near San Antonio,

“For men, it’s about power and sex. They steal for power, and they steal a lot.”

“Men,” Turner goes on to say, “use the money they embezzle to make themselves look good while women who embezzle use the money to make themselves feel good.”

Turner noted that women who embezzle are more likely to occupy mid-level management or accounting positions such as office managers and bookkeepers, while men are often at or near the top of the hierarchy of the company.

Another difference between men and women who embezzle is that women usually get fired, while men in higher level positions such as CEOs may have stolen millions, are less likely to be reported and charged with a crime.”

The charismatic Pragnesh Modhwadia, who is apparently still living in London, will no doubt be captivating his London legal teams.

Anonymous 08 September 23 14:34

@12:51 - you are assuming, I think unfairly, that she would not enjoy dancing in a bikini and squealing coquettishly while being blasted about the face and chest with a magnum of 2018 Krug.

St John Hawke 08 September 23 14:43

I have it on good authority that the money is merely resting in his account campervan, and is in fact fully ringfenced to pursue a further independence referendum.

Anonymous 08 September 23 14:49

@What a mess 08 September 23 13:24 I understand they’re looking into members of the accounts team at the moment.  

Death to the SRA 08 September 23 15:13

The SRA’s ineptitude and incompetence is there for all to see.  A petty and vindictive organisation which concerns itself with everything but the things it ought to be doing.  Defund it, disband it.  

Benjamin button 08 September 23 16:27

64 million someone call the POlice or are they free from all this. I work at Ince and can confirm people are rapidly leaving he took us to vegas fully paid business class we had a great time no expense was spared i can see why now

roffer1 08 September 23 16:38

This is a bit off topic, but if you were ever to do something like this and you needed to do a 'Lord Lucan' - where would you go?

For me, the following options spring to mind:

North Cyprus



Scep Tick 08 September 23 19:19

Bearing that in mind... how the actual fook could it be possible for SIXTY FOUR MILLION POUNDS to have been merrily absconded from the client account?

It's always in the last place you look.

Johnny hates publicity 08 September 23 20:44

Oi Metliss! Wake up. WTAF is a chairman of a law firm remunerated for when £64m of client money goes walkies and he's got no idea it was going on (and I think we have to give Johnny "the man with no practising certificate" Metliss the benefit of the doubt).

Anon 08 September 23 21:01

Of course if a briefcase containing £64m had been left on a train, the SRA would have been all over the perpetrator. 

Anon 09 September 23 06:05

So it appears that the SRA or should I say the GMC (General Medical Council) as this is where most of the SRA staff come from, are in trouble again. First it was the Harold Shipman fiasco, and later a number of NHS scandals and then Jimmy Saville and now we have Steve Austin the £64 Million pound man. We can pay the compensation, we have the technology, we simply use members fees to pay for all of our incompetence. We are not accountable, and none of us have any legal backgrounds we only specialise in disasters, and cause as much damage as we can, until we all move to another organisation. 

The problem is where are all of the GMC staff going to move to next ?



Anon 09 September 23 09:50

We live in the road in Radlett where Pragnesh is building the most (ridiculously) enormous house having demolished a bungalow. They dug down 6m to put in an underground pool and complex. The house she’ll is complete roof and some of the windows. Work has been going on there for nearly 2 years. It all ground to a halt about 6 weeks ago. It’s worth noting that this is a small private road and the entire road objected to planning. Plus a new housing plan was in final draft with Hertsmere council, which seeks among other things to prevent distraction of bungalows to maintain a mix of housing stock. How he managed to get the council planning committee to support him nobody knows! 

Anon 09 September 23 10:20

The poor staff who have mortgages to pay and no clue what their rights are if SRA intervene.  No one informing them. #disgrace #thelawisanasrse (unless you have money)

Gobblepig 09 September 23 12:54

Scep Tick, unless someone is such  moron that they go on looking even after they have found the missing thing, then it is always going to be in the last place they look. 

Not pragsht 09 September 23 13:42

So is Axiom itself frozen too or just pragsht’s shares in it? Not that there’s any money left in axiom if he’s nicked it all….

Incredulous of Slough 09 September 23 15:12

Your company?  Maybe, but it certainly isn’t your money. This was given to you in trust.

‘a very successful company which should continue trading’?  There’s Pragsmatic and there’s delusional. In reality, you’ve done a Ratner on your company. Ironically, Gerald Ratner wrecked his company by being too honest.

£64M is no decimal point mistake. I have no idea how this was done but it’s apparent from posts above that there should have been other people involved. Still, if you surround yourself with likeminded people anything is possible.

The SRA doesn’t seem to be very popular but to make this so public they must have had good cause. The consequences for so many are so serious. Sadly, it looks like clients and colleagues have been badly let down.  That trust won’t be restored.

I do hope this ends in a trial, I’d like to know what went on and how.

Billy dog 09 September 23 15:33

Hopefully  plexus staff well fee earners and the selected  few get tuped or move to new passtures  new the poor  support  staff eg  facilities  accounts   it are not spoken to and have no idea what the fxxk is happen it a complete  shit show 

Anon 09 September 23 15:38

I can overlook almost anything but not the ghastly vulgarity of it all. May he & his accounts staff rot in hell.


The end of the road for the SRA 09 September 23 16:36

The SRA approved both sales of Ince and Plexus when they KNEW that there had been misappropriation because they were far down the road of investigating him.

If a solicitor displayed that level of incompetence they’d be struck off, it is as simple as that.

There will be no accountability from the SRA.  This thoroughly discredited and wholly incompetent organisation must be jettisoned from the profession.  It cannot credibly regulate the profession after this. 

Sanctioning of Rats Authority (SRA) 09 September 23 16:54

Unfit and improper person(s) required to hoover up insolvent law firms, no questions asked.

We will sanction all applicants, irrespective of their backgrounds, criminal records, existing regulatory sanctions or on-going regulatory investigations (which we will turn a blind eye to).

Please send details of your antecedent criminal and regulatory history (which we intend to overlook) to the SRA, The Cube, Birmingham, so that you can begin the process of acquiring law firms with client accounts overflowing with filthy lucre.

All applications will be subject to the code of omertà. 


Anonymous 09 September 23 17:53

If it’s client money that has gone missing then I imagine clients will expect it to be paid back.

If the Firm can’t pay it, who does? 

anon 10 September 23 06:55

I know where the money is ! Pragnesh has buried the money under his underground pool in Radlett. This is exactly what Rose and Fred West did with their crimes, bury it at home. 

Anon PII 11 September 23 07:26

@Anon 09 September 23 09:50 Your comment is interesting.  I have investigated many lawyer frauds over the years for insurers and a significant proportion was uncovered at the point where the lawyer was installing a swimming pool at home. 

Anonymous 11 September 23 08:36

I’d like to say Prags took the SRA for fools but as they were already investigating him, it’s clear they are worse than fools.  The SRA has shown its incompetence again.  It sucks in more and more money and does the profession more and more harm.

This latest episode has made it a laughing stock.  

The incompetence is so appalling that it leads one to wonder whether there is more going on here.  Is corruption at play?  I can think of no other regulator which would sanction the sale of two firms to a company wholly owned by somebody they were already investigating.

We need an independent inquiry because this absolutely stinks. 

Anon 11 September 23 08:59


Prison term: 'Prag'

pragmatic (practical) prisoner who allows others to have sex with him in order to gain security or favors.

How fitting!!!

Anon 11 September 23 11:24

That's north of £600 per practicing certificate if nothing is recovered for the compensation fund

Rusty Guardian 11 September 23 11:34

It appears that Pragz has either dispensed (or been dispensed by) Rustem as he is now represented by Brooke Consultancy... the plot thickens

Lawlover123456 11 September 23 14:45

What about Rupesh Karawadra he is listed as a 'chief technical officer' of the firm....and is Prag's cousin.

Rupesh seems to have a sticky past too if you google........

Dimps 11 September 23 15:07

A Tale of Deception and Betrayal" delves into the tragic consequences of Bhavesh's misguided actions. In his quest for power and riches, he unwittingly manipulates his best friend, Pragnesh, leading to a series of events that culminate in Pragnesh's capture and Bhavesh's hollow victory. This cautionary tale reminds us of the destructive power of greed, the importance of loyalty, and the ultimate price one pays for disregarding the true value of friendship.

Praggyhateclub 12 September 23 01:34

Praggy is going to rot in jail. Is his lawyer seriously making it out that they care about clients and staff. Crooks 

McFarlanes and Interpath - controlling the narrative 12 September 23 06:18

From McFarlanes website

Macfarlanes is delighted to have advised Interpath Advisory on the pre-pack sale of defendant insurance law firm Plexus Legal LLP to Axiom Ince Limited, which completed on Friday. 540 jobs have been saved by the deal.
Paul Keddie comments “We are pleased to have been able to advise on this transaction and to have secured a positive solution for Plexus’ clients and employees.”

Plexus’ clients and employees are unlikely to share their delight.  Describing the sale as a “positive solution” also seems to be a bit of a stretch bearing in mind the carnage which the sale has unleashed.


From Interpath website

Sale to Axiom Ince Limited safeguards 540 jobs

The future of Plexus has been secured following a sale of the business and certain assets out of administration to Axiom Ince Limited (‘Axiom’).

James Clark, managing director at Interpath Advisory and joint administrator, said: “Undoubtedly, it has been a very difficult few years for Plexus, and so we’re pleased to have been able to conclude this transaction which not only secures the future of the business, but importantly secures 540 jobs without any need for redundancies.

“Right from their initial expression of interest, Axiom were determined and committed to acquiring the practice, safeguarding jobs and importantly, helping to protect client interests.”

You would have thought they might at least have the self-awareness to amend their website bearing in mind the utter shit show that has been unleashed.  

All jobs will be lost, the business has been obliterated and if Axiom bought Plexus on the drip, the price will not be paid.

But it’s important not to let these minor details get in the way of a bit of trumpeting on your website.  


Anonymous 12 September 23 06:52

If the 64m is indeed stolen by Prag, aren't the partners of Ince on the hook given that they held themselves out as owners of the firm?

LetsallgotoCannes 12 September 23 11:13

Looking forward to an update on today's (Tuesday's) court hearing.  Please share what you know.

roffer1 12 September 23 11:26

Who knew that they were involved in a THIRD acquisition - see below, from their website:

Axiom Ince Limited is pleased to announce the acquisition of Plexus Legal LLP and Plexus North LLP (Plexus) as of 7 July 2023.

Axiom Ince Limited announces the acquisition and merger of Wiseman Lee, an independent law firm that strengthens our presence in London in accordance with its objectives and planned organic growth.

roffer1 12 September 23 11:59

This is a property holding company owned by PM which has become subject to 'Receiver Action'. Read between the lines here, folks.


Company number 14381846

Company status

Receiver Action

Nature of business (SIC)

  • 68100 - Buying and selling of own real estate
  • 68209 - Other letting and operating of own or leased real estate


Hugh Jarse Esq 12 September 23 15:43

I see the miscreant has admitted today that the funds are, in fact, gone. No sh*t Sherlock!!!

That must have been some trip to Vegas guys - when the Axiom Ince Board was comped by Prags to the capital of sin.  I heard, on stone wall authority, that it was like the Wolf of Wall Street. Now if I'd been on that trip, and I wasn't, I'd be afraid  very afraid of the leverage the bold prags will have over you... You know who you are and what you allowed to happen.  ROF - keep the pressure on this shower of donkeys. Namaste all 🙏 

Anon 12 September 23 16:12

With an admission in the High Court today that he did take £64m of CLIENT MONEY is anyone else surprised he is still walking the streets?

Looking forward to an excellent RoF update on this story.

What a mess 12 September 23 17:58

So Prags is still in the country and turned up to the hearing. He's got nowhere to go with this. Nothing but  greed - wanted a lifestyle he could not afford and stole to get what he wanted - ultimately an empty and shallow life. He's a crook through and through - what I want to know is who else and how many others are involved because there is no way he has done this on his own. He has ruined his life - and actually needs to go to prison for this large-scale deception. 

Jail?Jailors?Police?Anything? 12 September 23 18:53

Well, he says the money is gone; looks like he is ready for his prison term; guess, the money is buried somewhere in one of the properties he/family owns until he comes out.  His facial expression from leaving Rolls Building today, shows he is content with his actions as he seems to have a cheeky grin on his face.  

Disgusting.  Just disgusting.  


Anonymous 12 September 23 20:44

So Axiom will fold imminently.  There will be no successor practice to cover all the things the SRA demand a successor practice should cover.

Who is going to pay for the negligence claims and who is going to pay for the file storage charges?  

The SRA’s gross incompetence is going to cost us all dear, I’m afraid.

It is unforgivable that the profession will be exposed to all of this expense because of the SRA’s gross incompetence.  

We deserve so much better than this.  


Hmmm 12 September 23 20:51

Looks like he used the money to ‘buy’ inceplex…. and properties - HC hearing didn’t say if he paid for Deliveroo too or bought himself sweets with the money 

what a proverbials…..!

What a mess 12 September 23 21:50

Reading the article - pretty sure Prags will go down but it will be interesting to see who he takes with him. Pandora's box is open - it'll all come out. He won't go down alone, some should be  scared, very scared!

Time to get real 12 September 23 23:03

There is no rescue boat. The senior partner is simply looking out for himself and trying to find a home. perhaps he should just now retire along with the oldies who sold their firms to Prags and help the next gen move on. No firm is buying this and ending up with a successor practice issue.  Just leave and get out before the curtain goes down and your clients and files are in the hands of an administrator or the SRA with you without any control. 

(W)Here's Johnny!!! 13 September 23 10:19

Johnny Metliss gets banned from local corner shop for coughing over everyone during COVID and not giving a shit - reams of blog.

Johnny Metliss smashes up Luciana Berger's office and shouts at her staff. He makes a half-hearted apology.

Johnny Metliss presides as Chairman over a firm which has £64m stolen from client account. His response: "..."

Contrast Johnny Mets with Nicholas Cheffings, former chair of Hogan Lovells and a man of huge integrity, who put out a statement immediately to the whole firm in 2012 when Christopher Grierson was dismissed for nicking £1.3m from the firm. Cheffings explained what had happened, reassured everyone of the firm's commitment to high standards of ethical conduct and foreshadowed the tightening of accounts procedures.

roffer1 13 September 23 14:49

So the money was used by him, amongst other things, to buy and renovate a number of expensive residential properties.

I am quite sure that if I had done this, I would already be in prison awaiting a trial date.

So why isn't he?

Could it be that there is a 'woke' element in all of this, which ensures that he gets the kid gloves treatment?

Anon 13 September 23 15:08

Out here in the provinces I know nothing of these people which enables me to ask whether this bloke is stark, staring bonkers ?

Seemingly he's admitted to misappropriating £64m from his client account in circumstances that suggest most of it is irrecoverable and has not fled the country. Did he think no one would notice that the bank reconciliation statements were adrift a tad and would not notify the authorities (if clients had not done so first when they found that their money had gone walkabout).

Why do it (and if you did, why hang around) ? He's looking  at a minimum of 15 years I would think given the amount of money and the carnage that'll undoubtedly follow.

Jórvíkspectator 13 September 23 16:26

In addition to the Ince and Plexus groups Pragnesh Modhwadia also acquired, presumably with client account money, the practice of Wiseman Lee, a well-respected long-established multi-branched practice based in Walthamstow.  The four active partners listed on the government website for Wiseman Lee LLP can be seen to have a present average age of 67.  This should be a salutary warning to the many hundreds of small legal practices throughout the country that have also never had a clear vision of bringing younger people into the partnership or a succession strategy. It would be better to entrust the sale of such a practice with older partners to the one or two organisations that regularly advertise practices for sale in the Law Society Gazette rather than arranging a quick sale to a buyer who turns up offering some ready money.  But for the staff and clients of Wiseman Lee the outlook does not seem to be rosy even though even though three of the members of Wiseman Lee LLP are now listed in this website as being with Axiom DWFM.

As the correspondent above noted, Mr Modhwadia left the court yesterday with a satisfied smile on his face - i.e. look of a winner. He is obviously an expert planner and may have planned the whole scenario, including being answerable to courts of law, whilst he was an undergraduate at Queen Mary University when a former solicitor called Dixit Shah was active. Modhwadia was born in 1983 and according to his Linked In entry admitted as a solicitor in around 2005 -

A previous correspondent on this site has confirmed this about Modhwadia

Anon 02 September 23 13:35 "He just up his firm at 3 year pqe, that being trained from a small time firm on top of a fruit and veg shop."

The criminal career of former solicitor Dixit Shah wrecked the lives of many people and is described in this article dated 8 October 2000 from the Law Society Gazette in respect of the emptying of the client accounts of 15 law firms :-

and this article dated 16 January 2015 in Legal Futures further stated in respect of him :-

that :-  “he “was involved in one of the profession’s most notorious law firm interventions – described at the time by the society as “the legal equivalent of the Great Train Robbery”. From 1998 to 2000, Mr Shah ran the Brandon group of firms, where the society alleges he misappropriated about £8m of client funds – an allegation which Mr Shah denies.

The Law Society intervened in Brandons in 2000, and the compensation fund has since paid out over £12m to former clients. ”

There is no record of any money having been recovered from Dixit Shah and indeed the Law Society had to become active once more , according to this report dated

27.01.15 from Brett Wilson -

"SRA obtains injunction prohibiting former solicitor from practising law

In Law Society v Shah [2014] EWHC 4382 (Ch), the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) obtained a final High Court injunction against former solicitor Dixit Shah (also known as Sanjay Shah) which prohibits him from holding himself out as a solicitor, carrying out reserved legal activities or having any involvement with a solicitors’ firm or any other entity regulated by the SRA in England and Wales.

In 2002 Mr Shah was struck off the roll of solicitors. In September 2009 he was arrested and subsequently pleaded guilty to a number of fraud offences, receiving a prison sentence of five years and six months. Mr Shah was released from prison in June 2012.


On 22 May 2014 the SRA obtained an interim injunction after it became concerned about Mr Shah’s connection with at least one law firm - Trinity & Co. The firm in question has since been intervened (closed down) by the SRA.

Delivering judgment at a final hearing on 12 January 2015, Tim Kerr QC sitting at a Deputy High Court Judge held that there was sufficient evidence that although Mr Shah had been struck off that he was “closely involved” in the management of Trinity & Co and that unless he was restrained “there [was] a real danger that he [might] engage in activities that would either involve the commission of criminal acts by him, or breaches of the regulatory regime by others”.

The High Court has jurisdiction to make an order under section 41(4) of the Solicitors Act 1974.

It is understood that this is the first time the SRA has sought such an order."

So Mr. Pragnesh Modhwadia has been handed a precedent (by Mr Dixit Shah) as to the lack of need ever to repay the money which he has admitted taking, and so Modhwadia may have pre-planned all the steps, including the serving of a jail sentence, secure in the knowledge that he [or his family and associates] will be able to keep at least some of the money for his use in the future.

Realist 13 September 23 22:24

If the SRA had the slightest concern about Pragnesh they should have NOT allowed him to own more of our Profession. Simples


If they did, they are NOT fit for purpose.


Timur Rustem 13 September 23 22:39

Every criminal defence lawyer ever: "this is just a misunderstanding - I am sure my client is innocent and this can all be sorted out amicably."

Anonymous 14 September 23 09:31

How much is the SRA’s incompetence and failure to veto the sales (when it could and should have), going to cost the profession?  
Where is the transparency?


Anonymous 14 September 23 10:04

all very peculiar - he didn’t high tail it to belarus, it was going to catch up with him, why aren’t plod involved? or are they?

The end of Prags Rein! 14 September 23 12:19

Interesting article in the Times today...  first to publicly point the finger at Sam Palmer/Pinsents who acted on both acquisitions (conflict surely?) and looked the other way (or didnt do her job properly...).

Hopefully the poor staff who are left behind get the film/book royalties donated to them, particularly those in the back office who have been well and truly shafted.

Cloud Cookoo Land 14 September 23 21:24

What a mess, from the Plexus side not a lot of us left, still some partners sorting themselves out, but those who are left are treated like mushrooms, kept in the dark and fed a load of shit.  Just don't actually understand how it could all happen to be honest.

Anon LLP 14 September 23 22:16

Axiom are likely to get kicked off from lender panels, banks might be pulling credit facilities covenants etc. difficult to see how they’ll survive . Sad all of it for clients and staff (but not the  crim staff who might’ve helped Prigs to help himself to £64mil).

All eyes on the SRA 15 September 23 09:04

Hard to see how this won’t lead to much more serious checks by the SRA on the solvency of law firms

Anonymous 15 September 23 09:09

Met police - get his passport *now*.

Freezing order for £64m now made. How the hell is he not bankrupt and under arrest?

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