[2023] 6 MLRA 50
Federal Court, Putrajaya
Mohamad Zabidin Mohd Diah CJM, Abdul Rahman Sebli CJSS, Rhodzariah Bujang FCJ
[Civil Appeal No: 02(f)-5-02-2023]
Mohamad Zabidin Mohd Diah CJM, Abdul Rahman Sebli CJSS, Rhodzariah Bujang FCJ


Abdul Rahman Sebli CJSS:

[1] The issues that arise in this appeal concern the power of the Malaysian Bar (the appellant) to compensate members of the public using money from the Bar Council's Compensation Fund for losses arising from acts of dishonesty by advocates and solicitors practicing in partnerships (as opposed to sole proprietorships).

[2] The facts as narrated by the appellant are undisputed and they are as follows, with the necessary modifications. The respondents lodged a complaint with the Advocates and Solicitors' Disciplinary Board ("the ASDB"). The complaint was as follows:

(1) The respondents were two out of four beneficiaries of a property held under P.N. No. Hakmilik Lot 4091, Mukim Hulu Kinta, Daerah Kinta, Perak Darul Ridzuan ("the property");

(2) The respondents consented to the sale and transfer of the property to Kawan Properties Sdn Bhd ("the purchaser"). The respondents' sister, one Cecelia Bernado Carvalho ("the vendor"), executed a sale and purchase agreement dated 12 July 2011 to sell the property to the purchaser for the sum of RM2,524,410.00;

(3) One Shan Theivanthiran ("Shan") practicing as a partner of Messrs Thevin Chandran & Associates acted as solicitors for the vendor;

(4) The purchaser's solicitors issued a cheque for the sum of RM2,145,748.50 ("the balance purchase price") to the vendor's solicitors Messrs Thevin Chandran & Associates;

(5) The balance purchase price was intended to be divided equally between the respondents being the two other beneficiaries of the property;

(6) Shan then issued two cheques, each for the sum of RM521,427.00 to the respondents;

(7) However, the respondents did not cash the cheques as Shan told them not to do so until further notice;

(8) Shan subsequently issued and banked in a cheque for the sum of RM1,042,854.00. This sum was intended to be divided between the respondents. The cheque was dishonoured;

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