A director has reacted angrily to claims by the SRA that his business masqueraded as a regulated firm of solicitors.
The SRA has warned that 'Henry Stowe', based in Lemington Spa, "is not a genuine firm of solicitors".
Fraudsters pretending to be solicitors are almost always online-only. But Henry Stowe has physical premises in Leamington Spa, and even appears to have produced leaflets. Its website and the leaflets described it as "Henry Stowe, Wills & Probate Solicitors", and as being "Authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority Number: 623047".
Part of the leaflet.
"Our logo has been misused on both the leaflet seen and the website", said the SRA.
The company's website has now been changed, and its twitter feed has been deleted.
Darren Braithwaite, one of Henry Stowe's two directors, told RollOnFriday that he would get "massive damages" from the regulator. "We have an SRA number and we paid the SRA an amount of money", he claimed.
Asked about his co-director, listed at Companies House as Jemma Towers, Braithwaite told RollOnFriday “I’m not telling you anything”.
When it was put to him that Henry Stowe had been advertising itself as a firm of solicitors, Braithwaite replied, “Are we though? Are we though? Did it say it on the website?” RollOnFriday suggested that it did. “Why are you doing it?" Braithwaite responded. "Why? Why don’t you go off and investigate Prince Andrew?”
TFW you’ve had 70,000 leaflets printed and the SRA gets hold of one.
When it was suggested that his comments didn’t help his case, Braithwaite replied, “It doesn't help my case? What the fuck do you mean by that?”
“I don’t give a shit what you think”, he added, in language not usually said out loud by law firm leaders to journalists.
“You’re clutching at straws” continued Braithwaite. “The SRA hasn't told you shit. And they can’t tell you shit.”
“Stop annoying me dickhead. Now put that in your rag.”
Braithwaite called back an hour later shouting, “I'm asking the questions now”. He demanded to know why RollOnFriday had an “unhealthy interest” in Towers, and asked who regulated this publication. “I look forward to reading the story, I’ll wipe my ass with it”, he added, before hanging up.
(If you're minded to follow Braithwaite's example, please clean your screen afterwards.)