16 May 2023

Barrister David Owusu-Yianoma was ordered to be suspended from practice for twelve months by an independent disciplinary tribunal which concluded on 12 May 2023 following a number of charges of professional misconduct brought by the Bar Standards Board (BSB).

The charges arose from Mr Owusu-Yianoma having submitted appeal documents purporting to have complied with his obligations as fresh appeal counsel, in accordance with the guidance, when in fact he had not. The Tribunal found Mr Owusu-Yianoma recklessly misled the court. It also held that through this conduct, Mr Owusu-Yianoma failed to observe his duty to the court in the administration of justice, and behaved in a way which was likely to diminish the trust and confidence which the public places in him or in the profession. Furthermore, the Tribunal found that Mr Owusu-Yianoma failed to take reasonable steps to avoid wasting the court’s time.

Commenting on the order to suspend Mr. Owusu-Yianoma from practice, a BSB spokesperson said: “It is essential that courts are able to rely upon the accuracy of documents completed by counsel. Where documents are not completed correctly, this has a significant detrimental impact on the reputation of the profession as well as on the proceedings in question. The potential seriousness of this impact and the nature of the conduct in this instance is reflected in the decision of the Tribunal to suspend Mr. Owusu-Yianoma.”

The tribunal’s decision was open to appeal and on 7 November 2023 Mr Justice Calver in the High Court (Owusu Yianoma v BSB [2023] EWHC 2785 (Admin)) held that the Tribunal had failed to give sufficient weight to the mitigating factors in this case and reduced the sanction imposed on Mr Owusu-Yianoma to a period of six months.


Notes to editors

About David Kwasi Dartey Owusu-Yianoma

David Owusu-Yianoma was called to the Bar of England and Wales by Inner Temple in November 1992.

About disciplinary tribunals

The Bar Tribunals and Adjudication Service (BTAS) is responsible for appointing and administering Disciplinary Tribunals on behalf of the President of the Council of the Inns of Court and its tribunals are independent of the BSB. The BSB is responsible for bringing charges of professional misconduct against barristers, which BTAS tribunal panels then adjudicate. The sanctions imposed are a matter for the tribunal having regard to the facts of the individual case and the BTAS Sanctions Guidance.

About the Bar Standards Board

Our mission is to regulate barristers and specialised legal services businesses in England and Wales in the public interest. For more information about what we do visit: http://bit.ly/1gwui8t

Contact: For all media enquiries call: 07432 713 328 or email [email protected].

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