ASC:Law’s Andrew Crossley is suspended, bankrupt, unemployed

Posted: January 16, 2012 by SJD in UK
Tags: , , , , , , ,


Andrew Crossley

Half a year ago I wrote about the sanctions imposed on Davenport Lyons’ solicitors. Today I woke up to read some huge yet anticipated news: one of the most famous proto-trolls, Andrew Crossley of ACS:Law was suspended for 2 years by UK’s Solicitor Disciplinary Tribunal.

Although, unfortunately, this feast of common sense does not take place here in the US, I hope that this sanctioning will send shivers down domestic trolls’ spines, especially since Mr. Crossley’s suspension was not the worst of his foes. In addition to that, he went bankrupt, and his reputation was completely destroyed. We do not see similar outcomes in the US at this time, because the speculative invoicing scam started in Great Britain much earlier, and giving the similarities between the British and the US judicial systems, the end of copyright trolling legal plague in the US is inevitable, in my opinion: we will get there sooner or later.

Meanwhile stay strong, educate yourself, and do not feed the trolls. Some settlements are inevitable: I understand that a teacher accused of downloading teen porn is risking too much even if he is innocent. Yet if you settle just out of irrational fear and do not make any effort to educate yourself and understand that trolls simply bluff, and that in 99% of cases they cannot do anything to you beyond harassment, settling is a bad service to society.

The news has been already widely covered, so I better stop here and let you read these reviews:

 

Also, I’d like to use this opportunity to send regards to our British brothers-in-arms, who diligently covered and accelerated ASC:Law’s downfall:

 

For the reference, here are the charges vs. Andrew Crossley brought by SDT:

  1. Allowed his independence to be compromised;
  2. Acted contrary to the best interests of his clients;
  3. Acted in a way that was likely to diminish the trust the public places in him or in the legal profession;
  4. Entered into arrangements to receive contingency fees for work done in prosecuting or defending contentious proceedings before the Courts of England and Wales except as permitted by statute or the common law;
  5. Acted where there was a conflict of interest in circumstances not permitted, in particular because there was a conflict with those of his clients;
  6. Used his position as a Solicitor to take or attempt to take unfair advantage of other persons being recipients of letters of claim either for his own benefit or for the benefit of his clients;

I do not believe that the UK and the US judicial systems are significantly different: at least some of these charges should be applicable to our domestic crooks (and some additional charges — not implausible at all). Pity we do not have a central authority like Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal here, though there are some authorities that oversight attorneys’ conduct. Here is one for Illinois. I urge everyone to find similar organizations in states where trolls are licensed and overwhelm those organizations with complaints.

Update

02/24/12

The Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal’s judgement is now published:

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Comments
  1. CTVic says:

    >>CHEER<<

    I'd start doing "the wave", but since we're all anonymous, it's just one androgynous entity standing up and sitting down all awkward-like.

  2. Porno Does says:

    doing the wave now! Who’s next?

  3. rob8urcakes says:

    Sorry folks but I can’t help it coz Karma’s a Bitch …

    If the image doesn’t appear, you can see it here

    Karma's Payback

  4. Jack says:

    This is a huge defeat for Andrew Crossley and his team, his own incompetence has also delivered a huge blow against the Digital Economy Act in the UK because he has proved that IP addresses cannot be reliably linked to P2P file sharers and that copyright cartels are prepared to make unfounded copyright abuse claims in order to generate an income.
    In the leaked emails Miller & Glen discussed the unreliability of Crossley’s “expert witness” Clem Vogler and Crossley never intended taking anyone to court but was relying on frightening people into paying up for something they might not have done. When Crossley was forced to take cases to court his scheme collapsed because he couldn’t prove wrong doing.

  5. Sloop John D says:

    Too bad UK law and cases have little to no bearing on the US Courts. I suppose we could cite this in an argument to show that similar trolls have been punished for this, but I doubt a US judge will take it seriously.

    • CTVic says:

      By itself, maybe a judge would take it seriously, maybe he wouldn’t.
      But combined with the rest of the growing mound of evidence that copyright trolling is a scam, it gets that much harder to ignore. Couple this with the successful lawsuit against Guardaley for misrepresenting their false positive rate to German copyright lawyers, and together they add more weight. Couple the Crossley indictment with his emails to Dunlap Grubb & Weaver showing interest in doing similar work in America, specifically due to “Statutory Damages” in the U.S. Copyright Code and it adds even more weight.

      Each decision is a part of a whole. Before long, the big picture will be so big that even the most shortsighted judge cannot afford to ignore it.

      • waiting4theCRASH says:

        shortsighted like the RIAA lobbyist/troll-in-judges-robes in DC……… Hmmm……see charge 3 and charge 5 above against Crossley, and imagine how that parallels with our DC jurist who has refused to recuse herself despite overwhelming prejudice and bias.

  6. Anonymous says:

    lets keep an eye on 1:10-cv-12043-GAO Shirokov v. Dunlap, Grubb & Weaver PLLC et al case.
    New developments and a hearing on a couple of motions is scheduled for February 15th.

    This will be very interesting!

    • CTVic says:

      Absolutely! This was the first major salvo against the Copyright Trolls in America, and is well worth watching!
      I have a feeling that this case will be the harbinger of the end for the Trolls, who will likely grab their cash, cut their losses and scurry back under their rocks. It’s too bad we can’t prepare for it in advance and cut off their retreat … hmmmmmm ….

  7. CTVic says:

    I rather liked the Forbes article … on page 2, it specifically mentions U.S. Copyright Group by name, listing their ‘savecinema.org’ url that is obviously their factory settlement storefront. They draw perfect parallels to Crossley’s scam in the UK and mention the fact that the drop between their legitimate titles and their much more abundant porn titles was “something like a coastal shelf”.

    Forbes isn’t some techno-nerd’s blog counting hits in the hundreds … Forbes is a major financial journal read coast to coast by CEOs, CFOs and assorted power-people everywhere. I hate to be the crazy guy walking around carrying a sign and shouting “Repent! The end is near!”, but publicity like THAT is an omen that’s tough to ignore!

    • The author, Daniel Nye Griffiths, is a sharp guy – I enjoy his witty tweets:

      Thank heavens the Supremes have empowered Congress to take works out of the public domain. Sergei Prokofiev relies on royalties for income.

  8. Jack says:

    Re SDT Judgment.
    Section 24. TT is Terence Tsang AKA Terence Jintin currently employed at PSB-Law in London.

    http://www.psb-law.co.uk/pagess/member-6/

    Section 91.12 “Neither MCAT nor the Respondent had evidence that the “Work” had been madeavailable. ” …….. ACS:Law could not prove copyright infringement from monitoring Torrents, they knew this and didn’t want to take cases to court but relied upon frightening people into paying up…. legal blackmail in fact.

    Section 91.5 “It was the Applicant’s case that the Letters of Claim and subsequent correspondence to the alleged infringers were misleading in a number of respects and were calculated to pressurise or intimidate the recipients into paying the settlement sum demanded regardless of whether or not they were liable for the alleged infringement(s). As a result of the letter writing campaign, the Respondent had received payments from alleged infringers totalling at least £936,000 and had received for himself at least £341,000.”

    …….. copyright trolls around the world have been following the same “business model” of pressure and intimidation. Good luck to our friends in the US with dealing with their own copyright trolls.

  9. [...] maybe a critical) opportunity to crash trolls, as IARDC’s foreign colleagues, British regulators, did recently. If IARDC remains silent this time, many, including legal professionals, overwhelming majority of [...]

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