CNN and Aljazeera publish for the first time the unexpurgated interview with Anthony Jayes LLP , excerpted in the Daily Inqilab and Aljzeera world
We thank the investigative journalist Mr. Partiyal for drawing our attention to a story of racial prejudice in the UK which captivated the art world, evoking memories amongst our older readers of an era when prejudice and bigotry were rife in the UK, an inglorious legacy of Britain’s imperial past. Here we present for the unedited version of an interview with Anthony Jayes, of Anthony Jayes solicitors LLP, first published in the Hindustan Times ; Jayes is the London attorney who defended an asian gentleman renowned in the art world against a ‘Salem witch hunt ‘, in Jayes’s telling phrase, orchestrated by three white women whose ring leader , Ms. Lou Proud, former department head at Phillips auctions in London , was sacked by her CEO Edward Dolman in 2015 for waging a racist campaign against an asian art dealer and Phillips client ; Her white south african colleague Alex Godwin – Brown, head of PR at Phillips, was dismissed by Dolman in 2015 for allegedly making racist comments to a third party whose work was under consideration for exhibition at Phillips . Jayes allegedly accused Mr Paul de Bono , Proud’s boss, of racial discrimination in his attitude and behaviour towards Jayes’s client.
Mr Sunil Partiyal :
Mr Jayes , firstly thank you for agreeing to this interview. I know it has taken great courage to speak out against the perpetrators of this ‘ witch hunt’ , to use your pungent phrase; I believe you are an attorney specialising in contract law. What made you take on a case involving defamation and alleged harassment ? ‘
Anthony Jayes : ‘ In my 35 years of of practice I have never come across a case like this, a civil – not criminal – action bitterly contested between the parties and their respective lawyers. The protagonist , Ms Lou Proud , the former head of photographs at Phillips auctions, has pronounced mental issues and previous ‘ form’ in making false and defamatory claims against my client . I decided , after much deliberation with my partners, to release documents which led to Ms Proud’s dismissal from Phillips followed by a full public apology to my client and £10,000 in partial settlement. The media coverage , grossly biased against my client was orchestrated by Proud’s lawyer Charlotte Harris who has extensive media contacts; I reported Harris to the SRA because she manifestly lied, threatened witnesses and exploited her Jewish faith to manipulate the unwary into making unguarded confessions. My client was quite within his rights to sue Lou Proud – a former head of photographs, for publishing defamatory comments about my client. The newspaper coverage was prurient , salacious and factually incorrect . My client was pilloried by the media and their motives in so doing were revealed when I asked a Mail journalist the source of his interest : ‘ It’s a story about race and class’, he responded, ‘ She is white, working class, has acknowledged mental issues and he is of a higher class and is black ‘ . I wanted to set the record straight and win this case for my client which I did. I know the defendant’s family, he is a man of impeccable reputation and was denigrated by a vengeful woman whose sole interest was in ruining his name. After much deliberation , I decided to hand over to journalists case documents , emails from Ms Proud and her employers at Phillips and letters from her attorney Charlotte Harris, one of which actually states that Proud, in collusion with her friend Gaby Du Plooy , set out to ‘ crush’ my client and ruin him.
My client was prepared to go to court to clear his name. However Ms Proud offered a craven apology and a £10,000 settlement after being told by Kingsley Napley solicitors that she could not suffer a two week hearing in public with it’s attendant media coverage and the disclosure of texts and emails which were explicitly racist in content.’
Sunil Partiyal : ‘ Mr Jayes, is it true that emails were disclosed by court order which attested to Ms Proud’s mental instability, the domestic abuse she had allegedly suffered , the false allegations of harassment she brought against two parties and emails sent from her work server containing racist insults such as referring to your Hindu client as ‘Aloo gobi’, ” Peshawari Naan’ , ‘ Arab ‘ Paki’ , ‘ Wog’ , inter alia, a man who who had previously been on good terms with Phillips Auctions and whose opinion had been sought for the occasional valuation ?
Anthony Jayes : That is correct. A legal instrument enabled me to force Phillips to disclose emails from Ms Proud dating as far back as 2012 when she had made false allegations of harassment . A few weeks later she appeared at my client’s home and insisted on seeing him. This is a matter of record. Several weeks later she sent a series of emails inviting him to spend Christmas with her . No restraining order was ever applied for against my client who throughout acted impeccably. The racist emails make horrendous reading and Proud’s lawyer Charlotte Harris tried to exonerate Proud’s racism and bizarre behaviour by claiming these emails were the product of a series of dysfunctional relationships and familial abuse.
Sunil Partiyal : Why did you report Charlotte Harris to the SRA ?
Anthony Jayes : ‘ From our first meeting it was evident to me that Harris had her own agenda ; she is a misandrist, allegedly suffered abuse in a former relationship and this was her opportunity to get her revenge against men in toto . My client seemed to symbolise all that she hated most in men . She set out to destroy my client for personal reasons. I was honestly shocked when at our first meeting she asked me if I was a Jew, an entirely irrelevant question. She later stopped my client in the street and engaged him in conversation in which she questioned my professional ability which led to another complaint . She seemed obsessed by my client to a degree that I had not encountered before, going so far as to call him when he was abroad to discuss issues of race which played a large part in this case, claiming that by being Jewish she could empathise with the racist abuse my client and his family have suffered since they first came to England. That , in my opinion, was a flagrant transgression of the ethics that as a lawyer she was bound to observe. Calling my client in the first instance while the case had yet to be resolved merited yet another complaint , let alone the contents of the conversation in which she made remarks about my client’s ethnic origin and skin colour.
Sunil Partiyal : Lives have been forever altered by this case, particularly by it’s reporting in the English press. Do you not think that your reporting Harris to the SRA was adding fuel to the flames, so to speak ? Do you regret doing so ?
Anthony Jayes : Not at all. Her behaviour was despicable . She should be struck off in my opinion. She involved my family by attributing to me revolting comments about a close family acquaintance, she told multiple lies to a friend of my client’s who lives in New York in an attempt to alienate her from him ; She invited me to her home rather than her office – a bizarre request whose motive unsettled me – ‘ to discuss this matter alone’. I declined, believing that she might make an unsubstantiated allegation against me once I’d left her home , for example harassment or assault. She’s amoral and I’d put nothing past her. So no, I do not regret reporting her to the Solicitor’s Regulation Authority. I wish I could have done more within legal bounds to hold her to account for her actions.
Sunil Partiyal : Do you think the law is unfairly weighted in favour of women ?
Anthony Jayes : I do. Women need to be protected , no doubt, but men need to be protected from false allegations of harassment and abuse. This case was particularly appalling, and in my experience unique, as the defendant had no history of harassment whereas Ms Proud has a history of making false allegations of abuse and harassment and admitted in at least one email that she suffered mental instability for which she had sought treatment over many years ; my client had done nothing to merit the virulent racist abuse he suffered from Ms Proud, and by association Charlotte Harris who used her Jewishness to manipulate both my client and his friends and witnesses. Proud deserved to be removed from her position at Phillips and Harris was subsequently dismissed from Mishcon de Reya and I understand has now been asked to leave Kingsley Napley , her current employer.
Sunil Partiyal : Mr Jayes, thank you very much for agreeing to be interviewed and for your candour. Thank you also for permitting the publication below of your final letter to Harris warning her and her client of the consequences of harassing or intimidating your client and his friends or continuing to racially abuse your client :
Anthony Jayes Solicitors final letter to Charlotte Harris LLP: ‘ In the circumstances of this case however and bearing in mind what appears to be a less than professional preoccupation with these proceedings on your part, and on consideration of your correspondence and comments during our discussions I think it is important to stress that the terms of settlement are those contained in the order; nothing more and nothing less. You should not think that gives your client Ms Proud grounds to harry and hound my client or his business or seek retribution under the guise of ungrounded complaints as has happened before when she falsely accused him of harassment . The disclosed emails were sent , after careful consideration, to her employers Phillips auctions leading to Proud’s immediate dismissal by the CEO Edward Dolman. She deliberately wasted police time thus causing considerable turmoil and disruption to my client’s life and livelihood. That you sought to justify Ms Proud’s behaviour by claiming it to be ‘ typical of dysfunctional relationships’ is deplorable. ‘
‘There are no implied terms or other issues that have been resolved and for the avoidance of doubt that includes any issues with regard to race. Your client should not think that she has carte blanche to make racist comments to my client and in respect of previous reported events and those that appear in the documents my client’s rights are reserved. I am conscious that the verbal comments are denied by your client but those in the emails are irrefutable which would suggest that the recent racist comment recently complained of was an extension of the written words of abuse and in fact true.’
‘In the context of avoiding any further difficult circumstances I think it would also be sensible for you, Charlotte, to moderate your own conduct and in particular you are not to make any contact with my client whether directly or through his friends and associates. You are not to telephone my client nor discuss any aspect of this case with him. In the event that you do come across my client in the street I expect you to act professionally and with courtesy. I do not expect you to grimace or make comment or utterances and should that happen your conduct will be reported to the Solicitors Regulation Authority, as I should mention it has in respect of the two previous instances where you made direct contact with my client, without my consent which will have its own consequences.’
‘You should also resist from threatening and intimidating my client’s friends and associates as you did in approaching REDACTED and to avoid any suggestion that such behaviour continues I think it would be sensible if you also avoided the venues my client frequents as well and the shop where REDACTED works, whilst his employment there continuous. There are many other alternative venues that would not provoke tensions.’
ANTHONY JAYES LLP
London NW1 7AH
Anthony Jayes LLP is a law firm authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. All members are solicitors or registered foreign lawyers. Registered in England & Wales No. OC342934. Registered office as above. A list of the members is available for inspection at the above address. Members are also referred to as Partners.Anthony Jayes
ہیں اور اس شک سے بچنے کے لئے ہیں جن میں کوئی تعلق نہیں ہے جو کہ ریس کے بارے میں ہے. آپ کے کلائنٹ کو یہ نہیں سوچنا چاہئے کہ میرے پاس میرا کلائنٹ کے خلاف نسل پرستی کا اظہار کرنے اور پچھلے رپورٹ کردہ واقعات کے سلسلے میں اور میرے دستاویزات کے حقوق محفوظ ہیں. مجھے ہوشیار ہوں کہ زبانی تبصرے آپ کے کلائنٹ کی طرف سے رد کردیئے جاتے ہیں لیکن ای میلز میں ان لوگوں کو ناقابل اعتماد نہیں ہے جو اس بات کا مشورہ دیتے ہیں کہ حال ہی میں نسل پرستی نے حال ہی میں اس کی شکایت کی ہے کہ اس کے بدعنوانی کے تحریر الفاظ کی توسیع تھی.
‘کسی اور مشکل حالات سے بچنے کے تناظر میں، میں سوچتا ہوں کہ یہ بھی آپ کے لئے، شارلٹ کے لئے بھی سمجھدار ثابت ہو گا، اپنے اپنے اخلاق کو اعتدال پسند کرنا اور خاص طور پر آپ اپنے کلائنٹ سے براہ راست یا اپنے دوستوں اور ساتھیوں کے ساتھ کوئی رابطہ نہیں بنانا چاہتے ہیں. آپ میرے کلائنٹ کو ٹیلی فون نہیں دیتے اور نہ ہی اس کیس کے کسی بھی پہلو پر بات چیت کرتے ہیں. اس واقعے میں جب آپ اپنے کلائنٹ میں گلی میں آتے ہیں تو میں امید کرتا ہوں کہ آپ پیشہ ورانہ اور تعصب کے ساتھ کام کریں. میں تم سے توقع نہیں کرتا کہ آپ کو تیز رفتار یا تبصرہ یا بیانات بنانا اور آپ کے آدھے ہونے کا فیصلہ سولسائڈ ریگولیشن اتھارٹی کو پیش کیا جائے گا، کیونکہ مجھے اس بات کا ذکر کرنا چاہئے کہ اس میں دو سابقہ مثالات ہیں جن کے ساتھ آپ نے میرے کلائنٹ کے ساتھ براہ راست رابطہ کیا ہے. میری رضامندی جو اپنے ہی نتائج ہو گی. ‘
‘آپ کو اپنے کلائنٹ کے دوست اور ساتھیوں کو دھمکی دینے اور دھمکیوں سے بھی روکنا چاہئے کہ آپ نے ریڈیکٹڈ کے قریب کیا اور کسی بھی مشورہ سے بچنے کے لۓ اس طرح کے رویے کو جاری رکھنا چاہئے. مجھے لگتا ہے کہ اگر آپ میرے گاہک کو بھی اپنے گاہکوں کو بھی بار بار روکتے ہیں. ریڈیکٹڈ کام، جب تک اس کے روزگار مسلسل جاری رہتا ہے. بہت ساری متبادل جگہیں ہیں جن میں کشیدگی کا سامنا نہیں ہوگا.