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Barry Hart struck off

Auckland crime barrister Barry Hart has been struck off as a lawyer.

He was earlier found guilty by the Lawyers and Conveyancers disciplinary tribunal for professional misconduct.

Striking off was the penalty the New Zealand Law Society wanted for Mr Hart, who grossly overcharged some clients and obstructed disciplinary proceedings.

He must also pay $20,000 to the family he overcharged, $98,965 of the standards committee's costs, and the disciplinary tribunals costs of $45,000. 

Law society president Jonathan Temm says striking off is a severe penalty and has obvious consequences for Mr Hart.

"However, the main purpose of striking off is to protect the community and maintain the standards of the legal profession," he says.

"All lawyers have a duty to co-operate with and assist in regulating the profession.

"The tribunal's decision has shown that New Zealanders can have confidence that there is a clear process which ensures that obstruction of professional regulation is not acceptable."

Mr Temm says the tribunal was "highly critical of what it described as 'the arrogant and derisory manner' in which Mr Hart had approached any complaint of his conduct".

Meanwhile, Mr Hart was ordered this week to get off the farm he no longer owns. 

ANZ sold properties in Mr Hart's $26 million property portfolio in order to recover his $30 million-plus debt to the bank. 

RAW DATA: Disciplinary Tribunal's penalty decision (PDF) 187.98 KB

More by Caleb Allison

Comments and questions

Good..... one less parasite inhabiting the Legal profession.

Hart ultimately went down because of, like too many shonky lawyers and accountants, greed and a wonky moral compass.

Fantastic news

Absolutely fantastic.

I feel for Bazza, because I know that a Ferrari and Aston Martin don't come cheap.

Pompous Pr*ck

A sad end to what had been a distinguished career.

A victim of his own greed and hubris - tragic and loathsome.

Very sad indeed that Barry's high profile career ended this way, but on the other hand overcharging, etc, has come back to bite him big's called karma lol. Greed led to Incompetence and certainly got in the way of his career.

The Tribunal has been severely harsh because he is not a conformist -think they're trying to make a scapegoat of him.

No surprises and it's about time an example was set. Greed has been taking over this country since the mid 80's, it seems to be a common theme these days. The rich ripping off the average citizen.

Go back to the old way of doing business, hard work and honesty.

Working for the purpose of taking pride in your work, the rest will follow. Not working for a quick buck, a million dollar house and a bigger boat than your neighbor.

Read the decision, the penalty was primarily because of how he defended himself (which was not what he was found guilty of). Indeed, he did not have to defend himself, the onus was on the law society all the way.

Imagine being tried for murder and disrespecting the Judge (wrong, but not the issue). Imagine being found guilty but hanged mostly for contempt, not the murder itself. High Court should overturn this on appeal fairly succinctly.

Good luck Barry, do not know you too well but in the talks we had I got the impression you were a dedicated lawyer. To my knowledge, never in New Zealand history has anyone ever been struck off for overcharging or not handing over a file (or not defending oneself "responsibly").

Barry was part of the legal team that embarrassed the New Zealand justice system's abhorrent denial of justice to the poor in the Privy Council Taito decision, see [2002] 3 NZLR 577.

Harder was a lawyer that fought the system. So was Comeskey. Seems that every top criminal defence lawyer who becomes too much of a tall poppy gets chopped down.

This message will probably be censored, speaks volumes about the Fourth Estate here.

Some time ago I was hired at forum profiles services. I state that only the best professionals are able to do search engine optimization stuff.

Criminal lawyer Peter Williams respects Barry Hart, what, for what, for this "Hart grossly overcharged earlier clien"