The law firm’s 466% turnover increase, the ex-senior partner’s fraud and the ambiguously worded press release

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By Thomas Connelly on

It makes for an explosive combination


A London PR outfit has dropped a press release-shaped clanger by appearing to indicate — to our eyes, at least — that a law firm’s recent success stemmed from fraudulent activity. This is of course not the case.

The firm in question, Holborn-based ELS Legal, was keen to trumpet the impressive 466% increase in turnover it had generated after recovering from near devastation in 2012 when a partner committed fraud. So it hired self-proclaimed “expert noise makers” EdenCanCan to disseminate its good news.

Unfortunately for all concerned, an email sent to the press (reproduced below) clouded the intended message somewhat.


ELS Legal’s past troubles have been well-documented, with the firm hitting the headlines for reportedly presiding over the disappearance of €9.8m (£8.4m) from a property fund. But it seems to be enjoying a formidable recovery, with 2015 turnover hitting £1,832,341.40 — up from from £323,928 in 2012.

Nick Fulford, managing director of EdenCanCan, insisted that the wording of the email was not ambiguous, telling Legal Cheek:

Neither we nor our client ELS believe that that the press release or the accompanying summary of ELS news outlined in the email and reproduced here suggests that the recent success of ELS is due to the fraudulent activities of an ex director. Also none of the many journalists who have received this release have suggested it either. In fact we believe it would take a pretty staggering leap of grammatical imagination combined with a deliberate misinterpretation of all the information provided to reach that conclusion, so we are at a loss in understanding why Legal Cheek is concocting this rather thin story — other than it being possibly a quiet news day with a deadline looming?