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Criminal indictment for former high-profile lawyer Magill

Prosecutors this morning presented an indictment in the District Court charging a former high-profile criminal lawyer with a swag of serious charges, including money laundering and defrauding Legal Aid Queensland.

Almost four years after detectives raided then prominent Brisbane criminal law firm Lawler Magill, numerous criminal charges levelled against Adam Raydon Magill have reached the trial division of the courts for the first time.

Barrister Sarah Farnden, for the Director of Public Prosecutions, this morning presented indictments in the Brisbane District Court for Magill, 50, and two of his firm’s former clients, Piet ‘Bruce’ Luan Ta and brother Lam ‘Chop’ Quoc Ta.

The trio are each charged with one count of money laundering between May 2013 and April 2017 and aggravated fraud against Legal Aid Queensland (LAQ) between November 2013 and July 2016.

Magill is also charged with an additional count of fraud against LAQ between May and December 2015, aggravated fraud against his former firm between January 2011 and April 2017, and fraudulent falsification of records between August and November 2016.

Magill was not required to appear in court today, with his solicitor appearing via audio link and requesting the matter be adjourned for two months.

Senior Court Administrator Judge Paul Smith granted the adjournment after being told one of Magill’s co-accused, Piet Ta, was intending to make an application to have his matters tried separately.

The Ta brothers, who were also not required to appear in court, were represented by separate counsel during the indictment presentation.

Judge Smith adjourned the matter for mention on 5 August.

The next likely step in dealing with Magill’s charges will be having them listed for trial.

Magill, who was a long-serving police officer and Brisbane detective before becoming a solicitor in September 2007, was not required to enter a plea to any of the five charges.

Magill’s alleged offending was made public when investigators from Queensland’s Crime and Corruption Commission raided his firm – the now defunct Lawler Magill – as part of its Operation Stockade in October 2018.

Magill was fined $9600 in the Brisbane Magistrates Court in mid-2019 after pleading guilty to five counts of breaching bail conditions, including being filmed on CCTV at a Fortitude Valley bar with an accused co-offender, a former client and accused serious drug trafficker Lam Quoc Ta.

In February 2020, Magill failed in an appeal to the Brisbane District Court to have two of the convictions recorded against him removed.

On 8 July 2020, then Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal President Justice Martin Daubney AM dismissed an application by Magill for a review of a decision by Queensland Law Society to cancel his practising certificate (PC) on 18 November 2019.

Justice Daubney, in a written 23-page decision, said: “This Tribunal’s conclusion is that (Mr Magill) is not presently a fit and proper person to hold a (PC). Therefore…this Tribunal finds that the correct and preferable decision is that (Mr Magill’s) practising certificate be cancelled.

“Accordingly, the application of review will be dismissed.”

Justice Daubney’s decision came almost seven months after Magill failed in his application to QCAT for a stay of QLS’s decision to suspend his PC.

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