A former Dentons corporate associate, Gordon Herd, has been banned from the profession in England and Wales. The disciplinary move comes after a September 2021 work event at a London bar.
There, it’s alleged, Herd touched the thighs and backside of a colleague, without her consent. As reported by Roll on Friday:
A female colleague complained that at the party he placed his leg between her legs and rubbed her thighs, then rubbed her back and bottom, and “stood so close to her that she felt uncomfortable”.
Dentons investigated the incident, but Herd resigned from the firm before action was taken. However, the firm reported what happened to the British regulators — the SRA — and the Law Society of Scotland, as a spokesperson confirmed:
“We take such incidents very seriously and are committed to providing a working environment free from harassment and ensuring that all staff are treated, and treat others, with dignity and respect. The Associate in question left the firm following an internal investigation and we reported the incident to both the SRA and the Law Society of Scotland”.
The SRA determined it is “undesirable for [Herd] to be involved in a legal practice” without prior approval. And Herd’s conduct “was serious because during a work event he repeatedly touched a female colleague in a sexual manner without her consent.” The regulatory body continued, “He was directly responsible for his own conduct which made his colleague feel vulnerable, uncomfortable and distressed.”
However, Herd remains on the Scottish Roll. A spokesperson for the Law Society of Scotland said they “cannot confirm or deny individual complaints cases.” But, “In any case where we have reason to believe that one of our members has not met the high professional standards expected of them we will take action.”
Kathryn Rubino is a Senior Editor at Above the Law, host of The Jabot podcast, and co-host of Thinking Like A Lawyer. AtL tipsters are the best, so please connect with her. Feel free to email her with any tips, questions, or comments and follow her on Twitter @Kathryn1 or Mastodon @[email protected].