Friday 23 March 2018

Former FG election candidate and solicitor has licence suspended

Lyndsey Clarke with Taoiseach Enda Kenny during the local elections in 2014
Lyndsey Clarke with Taoiseach Enda Kenny during the local elections in 2014

John Mulligan and Shane Phelan

Two prominent Cork solicitors - including one who ran as a Fine Gael local election candidate - have had their practising certificates suspended by the president of the High Court.

Lyndsey Clarke and her former boss, solicitor Keith Flynn, were simultaneously suspended last month by the court's president, Justice Peter Kelly, pending a further order.

But the Law Society of Ireland - which regulates solicitors - has refused to say why the pair have been suspended. Ms Clarke was a candidate in Cork during the 2014 local election campaign, but failed to be elected.

She was contesting the Cork city north-west ward, and it was the first time the young mother had vied for election. She was pictured with Fine Gael leader and Taoiseach Enda Kenny as she sought to drum up support.

On a Facebook page in the run-up to the 2014 election, she said: "In my practice as a solicitor I spend my time in court fighting for the interests of my clients. I believe I can use this experience to fight for your interests with the same level of professionalism and determination."

Early last year, it was reported that Ms Clarke was being considered by Fine Gael as a potential general election candidate.

She notes on her Linkedin profile that she studied law in London and that she worked as a commercial property solicitor with Keith Flynn & Co, which had offices in Cork and Dublin.

She added in the entry that she focused her practice on "buying and selling commercial and distressed properties".

"I have extensive experience in receiver sales including Nama transactions, and complex residential conveyancing involving title and management company issues," she said.

Efforts to contact both Ms Clarke and Mr Flynn were unsuccessful. The Keith Flynn & Co practice is understood to have closed, and calls to both its offices went unanswered.

Ms Clarke and Mr Flynn both submitted affidavits to the High Court in August.

But the Law Society has refused to divulge any details of any complaints that may have been made against the pair, or any disciplinary action that has been taken or is under way against them.

A spokeswoman said that the society did not comment on individual cases.

Irish Independent

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