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Junior solicitor fined over ‘threatening’ tweets to MPs

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Ex-Shoosmiths associate admits inciting abuse against politicians after SRA investigation

The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has fined a solicitor for “threatening” tweets to politicians.

Luke James Holden, a property solicitor, admitted inciting abuse against members of parliament and against the family of one MP. He also accepted having used “threatening and/or offensive and/or abusive language towards the individuals he addressed and/or tagged which was likely to shock or harass”.

In a settlement with the SRA, Holden agreed to a fine of £2,000 plus £600 in costs.

The account has since been deleted and the specifics of the tweets are not set out, but they included “one tweet which incited harassment and/or abuse of a MP and his family” and another that “used derogatory and offensive language in respect of a MP’s child”. The tweets were sent over a period of seven months, “demonstrating persistent and protracted conduct”.

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The settlement also stresses that Holden “identified himself as a solicitor” in his Twitter profile. The SRA’s guide to social media no-nos, first published in 2017, says that there is an extra need for professionalism if “you have identified yourself as, or are known to be, a solicitor”.

Holden is not the first lawyer to come a cropper via Twitter. In 2019, a barrister resigned from the elite Doughty Street Chambers after being accused of tweeting from an anonymous account that attacked a colleague at the same set.

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