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Lawyer escapes censure

Watchdog rules out probe of Clifford Chance’s RBS inquiry

RBS St Andrew SqThe Solicitors Regulation Authority will not launch an inquiry into a complaint made over Clifford Chance‘s 2014 investigation into the Royal Bank of Scotland’s treatment of small companies.

Magic Circe firm Clifford Chance was hired to look into the bank’s behaviour following revelations in the Lawrence Tomlinson Report in 2013 which alleged the bank had mistreated thousands of small companies.

Critics said Clifford Chance’s subsequent report was a “whitewash”.

The SRA’s attention was drawn to an allegation that Clifford Chance overlooked a claim of fraud during its review into the global restructuring group, the bank’s restructuring division.

However, it has decided not to pursue the case. The regulator said it finds no evidence of potential misconduct by Clifford Chance in its report on GRG.

An SRA spokesman said: “We have looked further into the details, and have not found any evidence that suggests potential misconduct. We are not investigating and have closed the matter.”

The allegation that Clifford Chance failed to act on evidence was made by Clive May, the owner of a small bricklaying business.

A Clifford Chance spokesman said: “We are fully confident in the quality of our work throughout on this matter, and the conclusions of our report, and are glad to see this reflected in the SRA’s decision.”

 



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