Criminal Law

Ottawa lawyer James Bowie suspended from working towards legislation indefinitely

The suspension is unrelated to the investigation by the Regulation Society of Ontario into an alleged authorized services-for-sex scandal.

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Ottawa lawyer James Bowie, beneath investigation by the Regulation Society of Ontario for an alleged authorized services-for-sex scandal, has been suspended from working towards legislation indefinitely after he didn’t co-operate in three unrelated circumstances.

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Born in 1983, the only real practitioner was suspended Friday for skilled misconduct within the unrelated circumstances. Regulation Society Tribunal Chair Murray Chitra ordered Bowie to stop working towards legislation instantly till he solutions totally and appropriately to the complaints. (Some former shoppers complained about crummy service, awful communication and that he ghosted them after they demanded a refund.)

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Bowie additionally practiced legislation whereas beneath suspension in 2022. Bowie had a number of short-term administrative suspensions, in accordance with an affidavit filed by a law-society investigator.

On the tribunal on Friday, Ottawa lawyer Kathleen Kealey portrayed her shopper, Bowie, as a sufferer of the pandemic who suffered professionally and personally. Bowie’s very restricted authorized observe has suffered and he’s beneath medical care, Kealey advised the tribunal.

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Bowie is remorseful and intends to lastly co-operate with the legislation society’s investigations. Kealey additionally mentioned that Bowie is passionate in regards to the legislation and his penalty for skilled misconduct could have a big affect.

Bowie spoke briefly on the listening to, saying: “I want to apologize for taking on the tribunal’s time.”

Bowie additionally mentioned Kealey is a high quality lawyer and an excellent pal.

Within the joint place, licensed by the chair, Bowie accepted accountability for skilled misconduct and will probably be suspended indefinitely till he co-operates with the investigations. If he responds in a method that’s thought of applicable and correct by the law-society tribunal, he’ll then be suspended for one month. The indefinite suspension is designed as an incentive for him to begin enjoying ball with the legislation society, like each lawyer in Ontario is required to do.

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Within the penalty section of Friday’s listening to, legislation society lawyer Chad Skinner advised the tribunal chair the sanction is warranted so as to keep public confidence within the authorized career.

Chair Chitra signed off on the joint place and ordered Bowie to pay $5,000 in authorized prices. He has one 12 months to pay.

Whereas these complaints have been addressed at a disciplinary listening to, Bowie is now ready for the outcomes of one other legislation society investigation.

Solely this time, it’s not about poor service, however quite disturbing allegations that Bowie supplied authorized services-for-sex, invited the shopper to crush strains of cocaine at his place within the Glebe after which despatched her an unsolicited image of his penis.

The lady has since retained prison legislation specialist Michael Spratt, who filed the grievance to the legislation society on her behalf, as reported on this newspaper earlier this month. The grievance to the legislation society included attachments of Snapchat messages between Bowie and his shopper on the time and a screenshot of the unsolicited picture.

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In a canopy letter hooked up to the legislation society grievance, Spratt mentioned: “(The complainant) could be very upset and traumatized over the completely disgusting conduct of Mr. Bowie.

“These predatory acts violate a number of guidelines {of professional} conduct and have been deeply dangerous and offensive,” Spratt wrote to the legislation society. “(She) is fearful, given Mr. Bowie’s profile, about retribution.”

Bowie has but to file a response to the legislation society’s newest investigation, however an hour and a half after this newspaper reported on it final week, Bowie went reside on the social platform Discord to defend himself. Bowie publicly dismissed his former shopper as a broke, single mother.

Bowie went on to say his former shopper fabricated the allegations to keep away from paying her invoice.

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Bowie additionally acknowledged he’s beneath investigation by the legislation society, and mentioned: “I’ve acquired to present a written reply to the legislation society explaining all this, and they’ll conduct their investigation, and determine what they need to do.

“Within the meantime, everybody’s mad at me, and I’m dropping pals,” Bowie mentioned on-line.

On the Discord social platform, Bowie referenced the Snapchat messages in query. He mentioned he was merely flirting together with his shopper and in addition detailed his principle in regards to the allegations.

“Clearly what occurred right here, is so as to not pay her invoice, she tells (Ottawa lawyer Michael) Spratt some sob story,” Bowie mentioned.

Whereas Bowie took to the social platform to defend himself, he has but to reply to this newspaper after a number of requests for remark.

When he defended himself on-line, Bowie mentioned the unrelated circumstances have been boring bookkeeping points. He mentioned he took too lengthy to supply paperwork to legislation society investigators as a result of he was, “frankly, on the mistaken meds.”

(Bowie says he suffers from “lengthy Covid”, in accordance with tribunal data.)

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