Mohammed Idris Hanif has been struck off the roll of barristers and solicitors by the New Zealand Lawyers and Conveyancers Disciplinary Tribunal.
In 2018 Mr Hanif was found guilty of knowingly providing false and misleading information to Immigration New Zealand and was sentenced to 10 months home detention.
Mr Hanif had acted for a client, Feroz Ali, who was recruiting workers from Fiji, bringing them to New Zealand, and then setting them to work in his business. Mr Ali was convicted under the Immigration Act 2009 and was described as trafficking in human beings by deception.
Mr Hanif assisted Mr Ali by submitting visa applications that included false and misleading information. This false information had allowed the workers that Mr Ali had trafficked into the country to remain in New Zealand.
“Lawyers are required to maintain a relationship of confidence and trust with their clients, but in no way does that extend to acting illegally or assisting their client to commit criminal acts,” New Zealand Law Society President Tiana Epati says.
“All lawyers are officers of the court and the Rules of Conduct and Client Care state that a lawyer must not advise a client to engage in conduct that the lawyer knows to be fraudulent or criminal, nor assist any person in an activity that the lawyer knows is fraudulent or criminal.”