JSC candidate on fugitive lawyer complaint: ‘If Bobroff has something to say, he must say it in SA’

Ronald Bobroff in 2010. (Photo by Gallo Images / Financial Mail / Robert Tshabalala)

  • During a JSC interview, Peter Millar was asked about a complaint lodged by fugitive lawyer, Ronald Bobroff.
  • Millar said if Bobroff had complaints, he should come to South Africa.
  • Bobroff and his son, Darren, fled South Africa in 2016 to evade arrest.

During his interview for a seat on the Gauteng High Court bench, Peter Millar told the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) that, if fugitive lawyer Ronald Bobroff had anything to say to him, he should come to South Africa. 

Bobroff and his son, Darren, fled to Australia in 2016 following a criminal investigation into their legal practice. Clients had complained about inflated legal fees.  

The two were disbarred and fled the country before a warrant of arrest could be executed.

Millar was asked about complaints the Bobroffs made against him.

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The Bobroffs had lodged a complaint of unprofessional conduct against Millar with the Law Society of the Northern Provinces. The complaint was dismissed.

Millar told the panel:

If he has something to say, he must come here and say it. Mr Bobroff, for some reason, holds me accountable for whatever happened to him. I will take credit for getting the ball rolling.

“The Supreme Court of Appeal has ruled that he stole money from clients. They also ruled that he forfeit R95 million in stolen money to the state. I believe that the courts have spoken on the matter.”

Millar and other senior legal professionals are vying for 10 judge vacancies on the Gauteng High Court bench.  

Another candidate, Mncedisi Patrick Khumalo, said that, besides practising law, he worked for the 2010 Soccer World Cup organising committee for five years to set up the legal department.  

Asked why, with his experience, he was only applying now for a position on the bench, Khumalo said: “I had not been given an opportunity. If I was given, I would have taken it. I have never been invited. I wanted to accumulate more experience. I thought it would be a futile exercise to come then.”

Advocate Keitumetse Johanna Mogale told the JSC she had worked as an acting judge in several courts, including the family court. 

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On what she had done for transformation, Mogale said: “When I was appointed as a senior state advocate, I started promoting other women. There, I was allocated juniors to train. I transferred skills to them.”

Advocate Cassim Moosa said he was committed to the judiciary. 

“One learns that one has to put one’s thoughts and feelings aside for what one wants to aspire to. A judicial officer should not be above criticism; they must learn from criticism.”

He believed he was deserving of a permanent appointment.

The JSC will continue with its interviews on Wednesday.

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Publish date : 2021-10-05 19:57:47

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