Moment high-profile lawyer was fired
RECORDINGS of the moment a high profile lawyer was fired from his job after his boss accused him of stealing from his law firm have been played in court.
The recording was this morning played in the Brisbane Magistrates Court where lawyers Michael Bosscher, Alexander Ralston Jones and law clerk Thomas William Strofield are facing a committal hearing on fraud charges.
The three were each charged in late 2017 after a Crime and Corruption commission investigation targeting suspected criminal activity in the Queensland legal industry.
Former Bosscher Lawyers solicitor Tim Meehan, who represented high profile criminals including Daniel Morcombe's killer Brett Cowan, was back on the witness stand this morning to give evidence in the case against his former boss and colleagues.
During his cross examination, the court heard a recording made by Bosscher on August 16, 2016, in which he confronted Meehan about stealing from the law firm.
"Mate we've talked about having difficult conversations before … this is going to be the most difficult one I've ever had," Bosscher tells Meehan in the recording.
"You've been stealing from us.
Bosscher hands Meehan a document outlining his alleged offending and his options going forward, while verbally giving him examples of the evidence gathered against him including text messages and bank transfers.
"It's pretty locked and loaded and again I haven't gone that far but that was enough," Bosscher tells Meehan.
"Bottom line's this - you obviously no longer work here."
"At the end of that document there's some proposed steps forward, we have got some advice already obviously, it seems inevitable that we have to inform the law society …".
"This is potentially the tip of the iceberg."
Meehan was sentenced to five and a half years in jail over the fraud and released from prison in January this year.
He made statements against his former boss and colleagues to the Crime and Corruption Commission, accusing them of being involved in taking cash payments.
In the recording, Meehan goes on to apologise to Mr Bosscher and his wife.
"I'm really sorry," Meehan tells the couple.
"Thank you for saying that," Mr Bosscher responds.
Meehan faced a fiery cross examination from Bosscher's barrister Damian Walsh this morning, who questioned him about why he didn't refute the allegations during the meeting in which he was fired and in the weeks after the allegations surfaced.
"You're given plenty of opportunities to provide an explanation during the course of that interview weren't you, plenty of opportunities for you to say I did not steal from the firm, correct?" Mr Walsh asked.
"Probably," Meehan responded.
"And there were pauses (in the conversation), and at not one point did you deny the fact you'd stolen," Mr Walsh asked.
"In fact you had stolen hadn't you?"
"No," Meehan responded.
"Mr Meehan you were a lawyer, a criminal lawyer of 16 years' experience, you admitted stealing didn't you?," the barrister asked.
"I did,' Meehan responded.
"You know how damaging that can be in any case don't you?," Mr Walsh asked.
"Of course," Meehan replied.
Mr Walsh asked Meehan to explain why when he asked Meehan if he had stolen, he said no.
"It was in the circumstances of the cash scheme that we were all participating in," Meehan said.
The hearing continues.