A recent decision of the Law Society Tribunal has revoked the licence of an Ontario lawyer on the basis of conduct unbecoming a barrister or solicitor and being ungovernable.
The panel, an independent adjudicative tribunal within the Law Society of Upper Canada, ruled in accordance with the LSUC’s recommendations from a hearing in July, which found tax lawyer Joel Sumner should be disbarred for repeated threats to John Kochis, a chief deputy district attorney in San Bernardino, Calif., as well as toward the LSUC and the Law Society Tribunal, the tribunal agreed in its Sept. 26 ruling.
“Mr. Sumner’s conduct brings discredit on the legal profession,” reads the decision. “His threatening and harassing communications are criminal in nature. The communications reflect adversely on his trustworthiness and fitness as a lawyer. The manner in which he made them, and their content, undermine the administration of justice. His conduct falls within the definition of ‘conduct unbecoming’ . . .”