The New Zealand Lawyers and Conveyancers Disciplinary Tribunal (administered by the Ministry of Justice) has ordered the striking off of Andrew Neill Simpson from the roll of barristers and solicitors of the High Court on 10 November 2020. The order means Mr Simpson can no longer practice as a lawyer.
Mr Simpson was convicted of 13 charges of money laundering in the High Court in November 2019. He was sentenced to two years and nine months in prison.
Those charges related to his role in facilitating a money laundering operation. In the High Court decision, the sentencing judge recognized Mr Simpson had lent his professional skills and knowledge to a criminal drug operation involving significant money laundering.
A Lawyers Standards Committee determined the criminal conviction Mr Simpson received required his case to be put before the Tribunal. Under the Lawyers and Conveyancers Act 2006, the Tribunal is the only body able to make a finding of misconduct and order that a lawyer be struck off the roll of barristers and solicitors.
In its decision, the Tribunal stated, “We find that Mr Simpson must be struck off in order to protect the reputation of the profession and in order to maintain public confidence in the integrity of the profession.”