General News of Wednesday, 11 July 2018
The Human Rights Division of the Accra High Court has quashed the three -year suspension of Lawyer Francis Xavier Sosu by the General Legal Counsel(GLC), the body that regulates the legal profession.
Mr Sosu was suspended by the GLC on June 1, 2017 after it found him guilty for overcharging a client and also violating the legal profession’s code of conduct that prevents lawyers from advertising their services.
He was suspended for three years for each of the offence, which will run concurrently.
The GLC also ordered him to avail himself to a senior lawyer who will mentor him for one year.
Reasons for suspension
One of the reasons for Mr Sosu’s suspension, according to the GLC, was that he charged a client, known as Francis Agyare, GH¢50,000 as legal fee for a compensation claim of GH¢200,000.
The GLC, in its notice of suspension, stated that the legal fee charged by him was “excessive and an overestimation of the services rendered him when he represented to him that he was offering pro-bono legal service’’.
Also the GLC said Mr Sosu had, on two different occasions, advertised his firm’s name, address and telephone numbers on Facebook, with “the primary motive of personal advertisement and touting, which was in violation of Rule 2(4) of the Legal Profession (Professional Conduct.
Not happy with the decision of the GLC, the suspended lawyer filed a certiorari application at the Human Rights Court for his suspension to be quashed.
In a ruling today, (Wednesday), the court, presided over by Mrs Justice Gifty Agyei Addo, quashed the suspension on the basis that the GLC exceeded its jurisdiction because the offence and punishment for overcharging a client was not defined.
Also the court held that there was no complainant for the charge of advertising and touting leveled against the lawyer.