An Auckland lawyer has been suspended from practicing for nearly a year for "multiple professional failures" including pressuring a client to plead guilty to rape.
Arlan Arman, who admitted one charge of misconduct, has been suspended for 10 months by the New Zealand Lawyers and Conveyancers Disciplinary Tribunal.
The tribunal also ordered he not practise on his own account until it authorises him to do so and that he refunds $5000 in fees to a client.
The tribunal said the misconduct charge related to Arman's "multiple professional failures" towards his client, the most serious being pressuring him to plead guilty to three sex charges.
The guilty pleas were later set aside and Arman's client was acquitted after a jury trial with a new lawyer.
When vacating the client's guilty pleas, Judge David McNaughton said there had been a "substantial" miscarriage of justice in the case.
While Arman was acting in the case, there were a series of court appearances but Arman was often represented by an agent, or not at all on three occasions, the tribunal said.
He also failed to maintain proper written records of his instructions to agents and also lost the client's file.
The tribunal said Arman further did not meet or discuss trial strategy with his client, whom he told had no chance of successfully defending the charges.
He also advised him wrongly of the likely sentencing outcomes.
The tribunal added Arman had been absent at his penalty hearing and had failed to demonstrate insight or remorse for his conduct.
Arman was also ordered by the tribunal to pay costs of $16,024.
It is understood Arman no longer lives in New Zealand.