Less than six months after she was nearly imprisoned for repeatedly failing to reimburse a client, who she withheld court-ordered compensation, a lawyer has found herself in the same position.
Guardian Media understands that last month, High Court Judge Avason Quinlan-Williams issued an order directing that Kathy-Ann Mottley be arrested and imprisoned for a year for failing to pay money to her client Canute Antoine, as ordered by the Disciplinary Committee of the Law Association in 2016.
According to the document, which was only issued to attorneys for service this week, Mottley is to be freed from imprisonment as soon as she pays the $209,142.02 to Antoine.
Guardian Media understands that the order was not executed on Mottley, up to late yesterday. Provided she is able to pay the money before it is executed she would be able to escape without being imprisoned as occurred last year.
On August 11, last year, High Court Judge Frank Seepersad issued the committal order against attorney Mottley after she repeatedly missed deadlines to make the payment to another former client Wendy Phillip.
However, before High Court Marshalls could find Mottley to serve the order, which required that she be detained at the Women’s Prison in Arouca for 60 days, she paid the debt.
According to the evidence in that case, Phillip retained Mottley as she filed a lawsuit over her son Kareem Richards’ death, several years ago.
Phillip eventually obtained a default judgement and received $360,000 in compensation.
Phillip brought a professional misconduct complaint against Mottley after she withheld $113,000 of the payment, she received on Phillip’s behalf.
In June 2017, the Disciplinary Committee of the Law Association upheld Phillip’s claim and fined Mottley $10,000. Mottley was also ordered to clear her debt to Phillip.
Mottley appealed the decision, but as the appeal was about to be heard by Appellate Judge Mark Mohammed in December 2018, she withdrew it and agreed to pay the money in two instalments. Mottley was also ordered to pay the $4,000 in legal costs Phillip incurred in defending the appeal.
In May 2019, Mottley paid $10,000 as she claimed that she was in the process of selling a parcel of land to clear the debt.
Antoine is being represented by Larry Boyer and Lee Merry.