22 November 2018

A 39-year old solicitor who told the Solicitors Regulation Authority they were "fucking bent c**ts"* has been struck off.

When Luke Venton completed his training contact at West Country firm Everys in 2009, he applied to join the Roll. But he was rejected when it transpired that he had failed to disclose that he had been (deep breath) cautioned for disorderly behaviour when he was 17, cautioned for running away from a taxi without paying when he was 19, convicted of drink-driving and disqualified for two years when he was 24, and given a penalty notice for being drunk on a highway when he was 25. 

On appeal he was allowed onto the Roll in 2012. But, two years later, he was fined £500 for sending the regulator a stream of expletive-ridden emails. When he was notified of his fine, he emailed the SRA supervisor, "One for you David - and you can stick your adjudication invoice up your arse you fucking wanker - Regards Luke." The SRA warned Venton that his email repeated the type of language for which he had just been fined. He replied in robust fashion:

 

To: The SRA
From: Luke Venton
Date: 10 December 2014

Here's another one for you, you fucking bent c*nt(s). The SRA will never regulate me and that is it. If you send me the Adjudication Invoice it will be binned like the rest of the paperwork and not even read. Fucking wanker - fuck off!

Regards

Luke."

The SRA informed Venton that he was in breach of the Code as a result of his foul language. However, in reassuring news for any other solicitors who want to pop off at the SRA, it subsequently decided that "after careful consideration" it had "decided not to take further action". The regulator stipulated that it would reconsider its position if Venton was potty-mouthed in the future. Which he was, an incredible amount, as emails cited at his Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal hearing amply demonstrated:

To: The SRA
From: Luke Venton
Date: 18 February 2016
Subject: I have a little confession

I called [a Trowers & Hamlins partner] a fucking robbing c*nt! professionally that is where I ended up with him...

 

To: The SRA
From: Luke Venton
Date: 23 February 2016

Dear Mr Clare

I read your letter, and fuck off you c*nt!

Regards 

Luke

In one email Venton invited the SRA to pay him not to practise. "If you wanted to change tack on things and buy me out of the profession for life through negotiation", he wrote, "I would consider the offer". It declined, and so Venton vented on, and on. He sent abusive emails to his former firm and other solicitors, always copying in the SRA.

To: Everys partners
CC: The SRA
From: Luke Venton
Date: 29 December 2015

You dirty stinking c*nts (just thought I would send you my annual email as usual).

Regards

 

To: Everys partners
CC: The SRA
From: Luke Venton
Date: 13 January 2016
Subject: by the way

You and your lot are out right fucking criminals - absolute disgrace to the human race and you [obscured by punch hole] of shit. Don't ever cross my path. You lot are too old.

Regards 

Luke

 

To: Everys partners
CC: The SRA
From: Luke Venton
Date: 21 January 2016
Subject: So sorry to hear that your houses were burnt down...

Hopefully there will be some evidence hey..

regards

Luke

 

To: An Everys partner
CC: The SRA
From: Luke Venton
Date: 17 February 2016

You still backing up and raping a bunch of smack heads and their families? You dirty stinking c*nt! lol.

 

To: Legal recruiter at Cathedral Appointments
CC: The SRA
From: Luke Venton
Date: 20 January 2016

Fuck off you fat bitch! Get your pennies from someone else. I have left legal practise.

Regards

Luke

 

Just in case the emails weren't sufficient to convince the SDT that Venton might not be the finest figure of a solicitor, in 2017 he was convicted of wielding a knife in a pub. CCTV caught him throwing the blade in the air and catching it in the Oddfellow Arms in Exeter, scaring a group of women. He subsequently refused to attend his community service unless the probation officers bought his train fare. Venton argued that buying his own £5 ticket represented a breach of his human rights. The judge warned him that he would be sent to prison unless he changed his "silly attitude".

vent
Nice guy Venton chills with a pint and a knife.

 

Venton admitted the allegations at the Tribunal. When the prosecutor asked him if he copied the SRA into his abusive emails because he knew the recipients would forward them to the regulator anyway, he responded, "Yeah". In mitigation, he claimed that a training contract with Everys had "got him in with the wrong crowd". He also alleged that in Exmouth a large network of solicitors were involved in a "benefits fiddle" for "medication", but thanks to "issues he had raised" the town "had been cleaned up quite a lot". Venton added that he had enrolled in a "likeability programme", but "did not really like it", and claimed that he suffered from "mild to moderate depression", although he refused to produce any medical evidence.

Venton was stuck off, obviously, and ordered to pay £7,000 costs.

*asterisks throughout have been added by ROF.
Tip Off ROF

Comments

Anonymous 23 Nov 18

"Venton added that he had enrolled in a "likeability programme", but "did not really like it""   This bloke is a comedy genius. Can we lobby for him to be installed as head of the LawSoc please?

ventonmyspleen 23 Nov 18

Think he would be great at last min. Brexit negotiations. He can start by telling the Spanish what they can go and do over Gibraltar

Nonny 23 Nov 18

I don't think this is so bad: he was polite enough to put a * in the word c*nts. Often I forget.    Also, this is reported here far better than in the Gazette (the bit on Exmouth makes sense here, unlike the write up in the Gazette). 

Lydia 23 Nov 18

What does this bit mean - in Exmouth a large network of solicitors were involved in a "benefits fiddle" for "medication" ?

 

 

ShootyMcShootyface 23 Nov 18

Oh, is this in the Gazette as well.
Right, I'll fish my copy out of the bin, and extract it from it's protective wrapper, and have a look.
Exciting! Haven't actually opened the gazette in years. 

Do they still have that "Dealiest Deal" thing?
I'm told the amusing stories have been replaced with some dreary stream of consciousness rambling on the back page.

Anonymous 24 Nov 18

Well, no one could sue him for defamation. As I understand the tort his comments would have to be likely to lower a person in the estimation of right-thinking people. It may be that right-thinking people already hold these views about solicitors. And he may have the defence of justication in any event. 

Je Suis Monty Don l’autobus 25 Nov 18

There should be a compulsory likeability module on the LPC to be fair. This guy is a genius and I hope they haven’t banned him from employment in law firms, as I’d quite gladly hire him as a client care manager. I think he has all the key skills required.

LegalEagle 28 Nov 18

His dispatching of the recruiter was so concise and pointed. He took the time & care to notify her of his departure from the profession. 

wyn win 29 Nov 18

"To: The SRA
From: Luke Venton
Date: 23 February 2016

Dear Mr Clare

I read your letter, and fuck off you c*nt!

Regards 

Luke"

Every line of that is excellent.

Yvonne Rogers 05 Dec 18

He could work for me any time!  A sharp shooter and firing from both hips too.  Speaks in a language everyone can understand.  Short and to the point as well.  Everyone knows where they stand with a Lawyer like this fighting their corner.  You can still use his services if you want though provided you write him a Statement saying you know about his past history but are still happy to instruct him!

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