And in the red corner tonight…

When two tribes go to war?

The Times reports: “A City accountant convicted of leaving a lawyer’s face virtually unrecognisable in a brawl after drinking lager, champagne and tequila at a leaving party in a Fleet Street pub was spared jail but faces being struck off the chartered accountants’ register. Graham Carr, 39, who worked for KPMG, admitted causing actual bodily harm to Simon McPhee, of the City law firm Freshfields, after repeatedly punching him in the face in the Punch Tavern for talking too loudly. He was sentenced to a 12-month community order and 110 hours of unpaid work and ordered to pay £500 costs, reduced after the court was told that he had just been made redundant.”

I don’t know the circumstances of this matter, of course – but it seems to me than an assault leaving a man’s face ‘virtually unrecognisable’ goes far beyond a minor altercation in a pub.   It is astonishing that a professional man can resort to such violence  over such a trivial matter as talking too loudly.  Custodial sentence?  I’m not a criminal lawyer and did not hear the evidence, of course.  Presumably assaults of this severity usually attract a custodial sentence? Perhaps a reader who does practice in the criminal courts can shed some light?

It is just as well that Mr Carr was not a guest at an Inn of Court dining night – there would have been a hundred  or so lawyers talking loudly.

11 thoughts on “And in the red corner tonight…

  1. For talking too loudly? Pah…I smell a rat. £500 for rendering someone ‘unrecognisable’? According to CPS and Police Charging Standards, ABH contrary to s.47 of the Offences Against the Person Act 1861, is an either way offence carrying a MAXIMUM penalty on indictment of five years OR summarily, six months imprisonment and/ a fine…

    So clearly Charon, something has gone wrong here unless there was some other factor involved bar the alcohol consumption.


    P.s Hold on…the pub was called the ‘Punch Tavern’? Hmph.

  2. Writing as an accountant, this is a source of immense amusement amongst my brethren. Gobshite commercial lawyer gets thumped by a numbers geek. Triples all round !

  3. I think the key factor is ‘virtually unrecognisable’. That’s a bit of a relative term, and so will attract a relative sentence. (Now humming Deliverance theme tune, with image of Eversheds lawyers playing banjos).

  4. Sir,

    No harm done. As a member of the law society he will surely be two faced?

    The biggest stigma will be that his attacker was from the wrong side of Hadrians Wall. Oh the shame.. the shame.



  5. Bonsoir Sir James… good of you to drop by… I am, of course, half in the bag…. but always a pleasure to receive guests…. particularly from the auld country.

    I can, of course, make no comment on this matter – I rarely tsalk about law these days unless there is a wee dram in it…..

    A dreadful business to see two professionals fighting in bars…. even more curious that the matter did not attract the attention of a custodial sentence… we do not know the facts, of course..

    Have you any plans for this coming May Day Bank Holiday… I miss those old Soviet May Day parades… used to like singing the Soviet National Anthem as the rockets went by… I even stood on the roof of my house – imagining that I was there… in Red Square… but there we are..

    Now… May Day is a rather tedious affair… trying to find the neurofen from the execsses of Sunday..

    Until we next meet at The Dorchester to have our mince and tatties cooked by Alain Ducasse

    Your aye


  6. Sir,

    May Day will see me experiencing my usual trip across to Millport via Largs.
    The usual activities, plenty of fine malts, talking utter rubbish with the tourists, and no doubt placing a wager or two on the corracle race.

    I shall of course be back in plenty of time for our Dorchester soiree. I hear that an advanced party from Auld Reekie will be present for when we discuss Gordons next role.

    I do hope they will not be wearing their overalls at the table.



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