singing octo

It was all too much being back at the office.

Hogan Lovells has sacked an associate who allegedly put on a handsy performance at a karaoke night.

In February, RollOnFriday revealed that the firm had suspended 'Rover', not his real name, following allegations of serious misconduct. A spokesperson said at the time that the firm had "been made aware of an alleged conduct issue that has arisen in our London office", and that it was investigating.

The solicitor has now been asked to leave, said sources, following the conclusion of the probe.

Details of the incident have also emerged. In the course of a Hogan Lovells junior lawyers’ departmental drinks evening which ended up at the K Box karaoke bar in Smithfield, three attendees reported witnessing "highly inappropriate behaviour" from Rover towards two other members of their team, which included putting his hand up a lawyer’s skirt, according to sources.

Rover was the most senior lawyer at the event, suggesting that firms might benefit from a sober partner-level chaperone to keep a beady eye on social gatherings, at least until the excitement of irl parties dies down.

A settlement agreement has been agreed which grants Rover three months' gardening leave, RollOnFriday understands. In a statement, the firm said, "Our internal processes have concluded and the matter is now closed".

Comments for this story are, like the matter, now closed. 

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Anonymous 18 March 22 07:41

If what was alleged to happen did happen this should have been referred to the police and any action taken after a criminal conviction. Its too important to be investigated by HR, who might well be afraid to clear an accused person.

Anonymous 18 March 22 08:00

It’s up to the complainants to decide whether they want the police to take action.  The firm is blameless for handling it the way they did.

Deja vu 18 March 22 08:08

I remember a drunken big idiot rugby playing solicitor doing this on an evening out.  He was dismissed for it.  It happens all too often.  Predators should not be allowed to just move on quietly to other firms.  

Anonymous 18 March 22 08:26

Disagree, @8.00, its up to the complainant if they want to complain, but not who they complain to. It must be via the proper channels, which in cases like this is the police. The firm is to blame for investigating something it isn't qualified to do, doubly so if they didn't refer it to the police.

Anonymous 18 March 22 08:30

@Deja vu - that's why it needs to be established if they are predators, hence the need for the police to be involved.

Anonymous 18 March 22 08:37

Unclear whether it was one of the three 'watchers' or two other members of the team who complained.

Anonymous 18 March 22 09:06

You're wrong, question man.  It is entirely up to the complainants to choose who to complain to.  The firm is in no way to blame for dealing with this the way they did.  

Anonymous 18 March 22 11:44

The implication that the issue is that senior people weren’t present at the meeting or that sexual harrassment at a work event is linked to the “excitement” of irl parties is misjudged and sails perilously close to the “boys will be boys” narrative. This is a huge issue in the legal profession, and women should be able to attend work events with men of whatever seniority level without being sexually harassed. 

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