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Freshfields partner on indefinite leave ahead of disciplinary tribunal hearing

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer partner Ryan Beckwith is set to appear before the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal (SDT) next week having been placed on indefinite leave by the firm.

The Solicitors Regulation Authority, (SRA) which referred the case to the SDT, is yet to publish the allegations but said it would do so in the next few weeks. An early-stage case management hearing is set to take place Friday 26 April.

The Magic Circle firm confirmed Beckwith was on indefinite leave but declined to comment on the reason.

A Freshfields spokesperson said: ‘We are aware of the publication regarding a hearing before the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal involving a partner at the firm, who is on indefinite leave. The matter is subject to proceedings and we are unable comment further.’

Restructuring and insolvency partner Beckwith has instructed criminal law partner Nick Brett of Brett Wilson, while the SRA is being represented by Capsticks partner Daniel Purcell, according to a hearing document.

Beckwith was one of five promoted in the City to partner in 2012 as part of a 20-strong round.

He was on the Freshfields team for the collapse of UK construction giant Carillion, advising PwC as the manager of the liquidation last year.

Earlier this month it emerged that a solicitor at Allen & Overy (A&O) had been recommended for prosecution by the SRA over a controversial non-disclosure agreement (NDA) drafted for film producer Harvey Weinstein.

A&O was dragged into the spotlight a year ago, after it was revealed the City firm had drafted an NDA for Weinstein in 1998 after Zelda Perkins, who worked at the producer’s company Miramax, alleged Weinstein had sexually harassed a colleague.