2011 football money

Liquid football.

The Solicitors Regulation Authority has referred Mishcon de Reya and its former star sports partner for prosecution over her alleged approach to the firm's client account.

The SDT is set to prosecute Liz Ellen for allegedly causing or allowing payments to be made into and out of Mishcon's client account "in circumstances amounting to the provision of a banking facility", while the firm is accused of failing to take "any or adequate steps" to prevent it.

Ellen trained at Mishcon, and over 16 years she became a partner and the head of its Sports Group before she left ;in 2020 to set up her own consultancy, Livida Sport, with a Mishcon colleague.

Ellen's recent work includes acting on the transfer of Jude Bellingham from Birmingham City FC to Borussia Dortmund, and the SRA's charge is understood to also relate to a footballer's transfer, when a significant proportion of a £1.9m fee was allegedly paid by Newcastle United to a football agent, via Mishcon, in 2011.

Ellen's lawyer, Anthony Barnfather of Barnfather Solicitors said the matter "refers to historical issues occurring more than a decade ago when our client was a junior lawyer working under the supervision of various partners at MDR". 

He said the case would be considered by an independent tribunal so he could not comment further, "However, we can confirm that our client will defend those aspects of the proceedings that concern any alleged breaches involving her".

A spokesperson for Mishcon de Reya said the case "principally relates to admitted technical breaches" which "are connected to a former colleague", adding that it was a "historical matter" which the firm self-reported.

Mishcon is seeking to float for around £750m as early as this autumn, and certainly seems to be doing a thorough job of flushing out potential skeletons in advance.

Tip Off ROF


Anonymous 06 August 21 09:58

Is the suggestion that if alleged offences are both technical and historical, that somehow makes it alright?

Anonymous 06 August 21 10:38

Bad move to inform the SRA this happened whilst a junior. They will throw the book at her now.

Touker 06 August 21 16:54

Mishcons is an overrated lower-mid market shop with an overinflated view of itself and this is another example

Mishcon trainee 08 August 21 19:18

Not sure any other west end firm is as well known as MDR..

It’s a silver circle firm with a specialism in litigation rather than corporate PE work. It’s not as synonymous with the term as Macfarlanes and co, but it’s PEP and reputation in its key practice areas speaks for itself.

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