Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby onq » Thu Sep 16, 2010 9:20 pm

I read this piece on BD Online today about an architect who was obviously under a bit of pressure and not getting it together.
I don't condone violence to others but the stresses of a professional career and a marraige may not be easy to bear for some people.
Does this adjucation by the ARB seem fair to you or do you think its none of their business once it doesn't directly relate to practising as an architect?

ONQ

==============================================

http://www.bdonline.co.uk/news/jailed-architect-struck-off-arb-register/5004213.article


Jailed architect struck off Arb register

13 August 2010 | By Elizabeth Hopkirk

An architect who was jailed for seven years for attempting to murder his wife has been struck off by the Architects Registration Board.

Clive Wille, 56, of Croydon-based practice PCL, was convicted of attempted murder and threats to kill at the Old Bailey in October.

He held his third wife down on their bed after she asked for a divorce, bit her and screamed a death threat at her in April last year. The court heard he was suffering from depression at the time.

He was erased from the Arb’s register after the regulatory body’s professional conduct committee ruled that he had been convicted of a criminal offence that had material relevance to his fitness to practise as an architect.

Appearing at before the committee in person, Wille argued that his conviction did not relate to his professional life. He referred to the judge’s opinion that he did not present a significant risk to the public.

But the committee also heard that Wille had a drinking habit, struggled to cope with stress at work, had committed earlier acts of violence against his wife and “continues to have the potential to cause serious harm”.

Issuing the penalty, Angela Deacon, the chair of the committee, said: “Mr Wille is an architect with criminal convictions for violence. The purpose of the legislation is to protect the consumer and safeguard the reputation of architects.”

The committee’s decision, made on July 26, has only just been made public. Wille can apply to be re-instated after two years.
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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby KerryBog2 » Sun Sep 19, 2010 10:10 pm

onq wrote:I
.........
He held his third wife down ........ bit her and screamed a death threat at her in April last year. The court heard he was suffering from depression at the time............


I felt like doing this to the last architect I hired but managed to desist...:D
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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby missarchi » Sun Sep 19, 2010 11:34 pm

I think you should be more worried about wine bottles with no labels.
Try and get oprah in front of the tates.
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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby onq » Mon Sep 20, 2010 1:34 pm

Firs they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they attack you.

Bring it on you guys, but answer the question.

It was clear from the judges comments he didn't consider him a risk to the public.

What say you?

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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby Paul Clerkin » Mon Sep 20, 2010 1:51 pm

its the architecture versio of a ban for bringing the sport into disrepute
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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby onq » Mon Sep 20, 2010 4:56 pm

Not much clear direction there Paul in relation to off the pitch action.

A FEW EXAMPLES:

http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/journals/MULR/2001/22.html
Aspirations yes, sometimes harsh decisions, yes, but mired in debate and controversey.
[didn't read it all]

Where the matter is direclty related to the sport in question, there is still controversey, but its not as personally invasive
http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/2010/07/25/ferrari-fined-world-motorsport-council-to-examine-alonsos-pass-on-massa/

The following reference is possibly the most relevant
http://cms.jcu.edu.au/idc/groups/public/documents/speech/jcuprd_047304.pdf

In this case the matter was dealt with by fines and a suspension with actions either pending or not being taken by the police.

=================================

The problem with the sporting analogy is that its usually concern that sponsors will drop the sport rather than genuine concern for the public good or good example to minors.
Read the last part of the third link for confirmation of that comment's relevance - the Conclusion says it all; -

"4. Conclusion
Professional players rely on the sport they are involved in being able to generate sufficient income to support their wages or prizemoney. In the modern day corporate sponsorship is a major source of this income, and with such support, comes the need for the sport to maintain an image suitable for corporate support. The off-field behaviour of the players is therefore as important as on-field performance in relation to this image. This is why the bringing the sport into disrepute clause is required in the player contract and this then gives sporting organisations such as the NRL the ability to fine clubs and suspend players."


Yaas, very sporting - LOL!

=================================

Suspending a license to practice might be acceptable where the matter was not directly related to the profession and could be considered a "crime of passion" thatwas unlikely to occur in normal client architect relations.
But striking off seems to be to me a severe discipline and one that doesn't seem to take into account the facts of the case or the Judge's comments.
I don't think that in the case quoted above the profession will suffer because the client/public will be more afraid of being killed by their architect.
Mind you, given the amount of so-called "clients" who are swanning around still owing people money, perhaps that's more a reality now - ulp!

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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby missarchi » Mon Sep 20, 2010 11:32 pm

And frank lyodies wife and houses? can you ban clients?
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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby PVC King » Tue Sep 21, 2010 10:00 pm

onq wrote: Suspending a license to practice might be acceptable where the matter was not directly related to the profession and could be considered a "crime of passion" thatwas unlikely to occur in normal client architect relations.


Now I'm getting you confused with your French architect mate!!!

I think a suspension while he underwent psychiatric supervision for a year may have been more appropriate; had it been a client or contractor he was supervising or even a supplier then game over; it does however show how the media and in particular printed media love to stereotype people according to their careers or abodes; although in that regard a Croydon based architect is a bit of a contradiction....
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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby Bren88 » Thu Sep 23, 2010 8:32 am

I think its unfair, once he serves his time etc, he whould be free to return to society, return to work, having him struct off the register obvious hinfers him here and is somewhat discriminitatory, seeing as it was unrelated to professional practise.

On the other hand, I imagine the RIAI has a code of conduct that governs ones image and that of the institute.

He likely could get it reversed, but would probably make a lot of enemys and eventually be off the list somehow. Best bet would be to serve the ban and re-apply quietly.
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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby teak » Thu Sep 23, 2010 10:05 am

NOTE
1. An architect who was jailed for seven years for attempting to murder his wife has been struck off by the Architects Registration Board.
2. Wille can apply to be re-instated after two years.


The fundamental principle suggested by your question is a fair one.
The actual work of most architects is in the private sector.
(Were the architect in question working within the government sector, I think the general rules regarding treatment of employees convicted of crimes would apply and he'd lose his position, though not lose his membership of the profession. His re-employment would then be a matter of him finding an employer in the private sector willing to hire him -- fairly difficult but not totally impossible for a well-connected bloke.)
If, under a legal challenge to their striking-off, the ARB were to give the fact that the convicted man was interacting with the public, and as such they had a duty to protect the public, then I'd expect the barrister for the struck-off man to make a vigorous defence.
For openers, so many people in professions where they interact with the public are convicted of crimes and they are not barred from practising their jobs. So, implicitly at least, most professional bodies accept that a person convicted of a crime in his/her private life is generally not automatically more likely to commit similar crimes in his/her working environment.
It would have to fall on the ARB to demonstrate that the particular crime and the particular nature of an architect's interaction with the public would be such as to justify their decision to disbarr.
I think that this would be difficult for the ARB.
It would be far easier for the ARB here if he'd attacked a client in his office or made unwanted sexual advances on a secretary employed by him.
But with the crime centred on a personal relationship and carried out at home it seems harder to me for the ARB to play the public protection card.


But the question in reality is more academic.
Since the reapplication time is within his sentence period - with allowance for time served, good behaviour and so on he'd be out in ~ 3.5 years.
And with 3.5 years quiet service (e.g. as voluntary studio master in the prison and maybe some hours as voluntary teaching assistant) and a few good references from prison staff, he'll be taken back by the ARB no bother.
The only remaining question then is whether some mention of his having done time for a crime would be on the publicly-accessible part of his ARB professional record . . .
I fancy that ARB would not do this.
Otherwise he'd have to sue as such a black mark would undoubtedly deter a good many clients from using his services.

Clearly the ARB wants to be seen to be applying sanctions yet will not apply such sanction as would give rise to a restraint of trade case by the suspended architect involved.
Kinda like the GAA who suspend a famous player for so many weeks but no so many as to stop him playing in the major matches lest it cause uproar by his county board.

Hope you're not clearing the way to murder Mrs ONQ . . .
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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby teak » Thu Sep 23, 2010 5:18 pm

Most of these cases relate to matters bearing on the professional conduct of the members involved.
According to the news reports, e.g.
http://www.yourlocalguardian.co.uk/news/local/topstories/4751620.Addiscombe_architect_jailed_for_attempted_murder/
Mr Wille had already been relieved of his old job due to his collapsing at work.

So I'd say you're safe enough in committing a crime that has no connection with your job.;)
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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby onq » Thu Sep 23, 2010 10:30 pm

PVC King wrote:Now I'm getting you confused with your French architect mate!!!

I think a suspension while he underwent psychiatric supervision for a year may have been more appropriate; had it been a client or contractor he was supervising or even a supplier then game over; it does however show how the media and in particular printed media love to stereotype people according to their careers or abodes; although in that regard a Croydon based architect is a bit of a contradiction....



(nods)

Ya got me fair and sqaure on that one PVC King.

I spent some time with CK on Boards.ie without my gas mask - its catching.

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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby onq » Thu Sep 23, 2010 10:35 pm

teak wrote:
(sbnip)

The fundamental principle suggested by your question is a fair one.
The actual work of most architects is in the private sector.
(Were the architect in question working within the government sector, I think the general rules regarding treatment of employees convicted of crimes would apply and he'd lose his position, though not lose his membership of the profession. His re-employment would then be a matter of him finding an employer in the private sector willing to hire him -- fairly difficult but not totally impossible for a well-connected bloke.)
If, under a legal challenge to their striking-off, the ARB were to give the fact that the convicted man was interacting with the public, and as such they had a duty to protect the public, then I'd expect the barrister for the struck-off man to make a vigorous defence.
For openers, so many people in professions where they interact with the public are convicted of crimes and they are not barred from practising their jobs. So, implicitly at least, most professional bodies accept that a person convicted of a crime in his/her private life is generally not automatically more likely to commit similar crimes in his/her working environment.
It would have to fall on the ARB to demonstrate that the particular crime and the particular nature of an architect's interaction with the public would be such as to justify their decision to disbarr.
I think that this would be difficult for the ARB.
It would be far easier for the ARB here if he'd attacked a client in his office or made unwanted sexual advances on a secretary employed by him.
But with the crime centred on a personal relationship and carried out at home it seems harder to me for the ARB to play the public protection card.


But the question in reality is more academic.
Since the reapplication time is within his sentence period - with allowance for time served, good behaviour and so on he'd be out in ~ 3.5 years.
And with 3.5 years quiet service (e.g. as voluntary studio master in the prison and maybe some hours as voluntary teaching assistant) and a few good references from prison staff, he'll be taken back by the ARB no bother.
The only remaining question then is whether some mention of his having done time for a crime would be on the publicly-accessible part of his ARB professional record . . .
I fancy that ARB would not do this.
Otherwise he'd have to sue as such a black mark would undoubtedly deter a good many clients from using his services.

Clearly the ARB wants to be seen to be applying sanctions yet will not apply such sanction as would give rise to a restraint of trade case by the suspended architect involved.
Kinda like the GAA who suspend a famous player for so many weeks but no so many as to stop him playing in the major matches lest it cause uproar by his county board.

Hope you're not clearing the way to murder Mrs ONQ . . .


You were on a roll with teh logical dissection of teh ARB's legal position, with this I would tend to concur, then fluffed it by suggestign that the punctilious Brits would stoop to employing an Irish solution to a British problem, if you get my reference.

As for Mrs. ONQ, just remember that the female is the deadlier of the species.

(Ulp!)

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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby onq » Thu Sep 23, 2010 10:39 pm

teak wrote:Most of these cases relate to matters bearing on the professional conduct of the members involved.
According to the news reports, e.g.
http://www.yourlocalguardian.co.uk/news/local/topstories/4751620.Addiscombe_architect_jailed_for_attempted_murder/
Mr Wille had already been relieved of his old job due to his collapsing at work.

So I'd say you're safe enough in committing a crime that has no connection with your job.;)


A very sad tale.

Re your last point, so you're saying that if I take out all the bankers in the BIS, all the brokers on Wall Street and all the top brass at Goldman Sachs in revenge for their financial manipulations having destroyed my profession worldwide, I may get struck off, but if I accidentally run over John Gormley T.D., I'm safe enough?

Ummm.

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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby teak » Fri Sep 24, 2010 12:03 pm

Hands off Gormley. :mad:

He's abut the only thing ministerial in the current shower.
Played a good hand on Poolbeg.
Made planning officials have regard to energy-saving aspects of design features,
not just throw them out.
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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby onq » Fri Sep 24, 2010 5:03 pm

teak wrote:Hands off Gormley. :mad:

He's abut the only thing ministerial in the current shower.
Played a good hand on Poolbeg.
Made planning officials have regard to energy-saving aspects of design features,
not just throw them out.


Aha - I seem flushed out a GREEN grouse from the undergrowth!

Exactly what did you think was either competent or fair to the parties about his handling of Poolbeg.

And the last thing I read, the decision was that simply reading over the Guidelines amounted to "having regard" to them.

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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby teak » Fri Sep 24, 2010 7:19 pm

The Poolbeg decision and its merits are clear enough for anyone.
Ask someone who's lived near an incinerator in UK what it's about.

The having regard to passive-solar features of home design thing is
actually now being implemented in many rural houses.
People are allowed more wall glazing in SE, S and SW walls.
You wouldn't have a hope of getting this just a few years back.
I know that for many it's more of a personally appealing feature than
a functional one -- but who cares how as long as you can get it.

Anyway, we're well off topic here.

Maybe we should demand the records of all recent cases of striking off
from the RIAI's Professional Misconduct Committee.:p
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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby onq » Sat Sep 25, 2010 10:31 pm

teak wrote:The Poolbeg decision and its merits are clear enough for anyone.
Ask someone who's lived near an incinerator in UK what it's about.

OTC, the way he has held it up with the foreshore license seems to be a perversion of the democratic process.

In olden days if someone held up something like that you'd be wondering was he looking for some sort of inducement.

Doing the wrong thing for the right reasons doesn't make it better.

But apparently ignoring accepted Green doctrine across Europe to get re-elected would seem to be just wrong on all counts.


The having regard to passive-solar features of home design thing is
actually now being implemented in many rural houses.
People are allowed more wall glazing in SE, S and SW walls.
You wouldn't have a hope of getting this just a few years back.
I know that for many it's more of a personally appealing feature than
a functional one -- but who cares how as long as you can get it.

Anyway, we're well off topic here.

Maybe we should demand the records of all recent cases of striking off
from the RIAI's Professional Misconduct Committee.:p


A simple breakdown of allegations made and the status of the offender will be enough for me -
  • undergraduate
  • graduate
  • partIII/MRIAI
  • technician
  • technologist
  • draughtsperson
  • Grandfather/
  • David Grant [he gets his own category]

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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby wearnicehats » Mon Sep 27, 2010 9:56 am

the actual ARB press release on this is - naturally (at 3 pages) - more expansive than the BD snipped journalistic version. I don't feel it appropriate to print it as it is a very personal indictment of the person - albeit one sent out to all registered architects!!

The crux of the matter (as I read it) is that the man - who has attempted to control his anger issues but not his addictions (which are directly linked to job pressure) - could be invited into peoples' homes who otherwise would not be aware of the potential problem should they exacerbate it - say in an argument over fees or something. It's a difficult issue but it is one that is clearly set out in the ARB regs and, as such, something the ARB would possibly be culpable for should anything happen
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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby onq » Mon Sep 27, 2010 10:02 am

Things happen in a marraige that don't happen outside it, that have no bearing on the Public Domain or cause risk to members of the Public at Large.
The ARB's ruling suggests a huge indictment of the man's professional ability which simply does not appear to be supported by the facts at hand.

Going on this basis half the professionals in the country should be struck off - just in CASE!
More of the American's "pre-emptive action" nonsense - I don't think the law works like that.

And if its the way the ARB's regulations work, they may need to be revisited.

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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby teak » Mon Sep 27, 2010 11:47 pm

OTC, the way he has held it up with the foreshore license seems to be a perversion of the democratic process.

You really have to have a sense of proportion here.
Human health is all anyone has, as all we have grows out of it.
It's everyone's duty to protect that in any legal means he can.
Not least a Minister of Environment.

You can't mark the moves of gombeen men while worrying about high ideals.
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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby onq » Tue Sep 28, 2010 1:20 pm

teak wrote:OTC, the way he has held it up with the foreshore license seems to be a perversion of the democratic process.

You really have to have a sense of proportion here.
Human health is all anyone has, as all we have grows out of it.
It's everyone's duty to protect that in any legal means he can.
Not least a Minister of Environment.

You can't mark the moves of gombeen men while worrying about high ideals.


OTC unless you mark his moves by carrying out your high ideals, you end up using his methods and thereby slide down the slippery slope.

Gormley's halo slipped the day he went over on that boat to Holyhead to be picked up by a damed taxi sent from London to collect him.

That's a stunt Charlie McCreevey would be proud of!

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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby teak » Tue Sep 28, 2010 1:44 pm

So you'd have let the incinerator through.
You could live with the cancers, skins ailments, birth deformities --
all so you might be seen as the champion of idealized democratic functioning ?

Between this and your skipping round the "poor man" who half-choked his wife to death
I'm in a mind to send the social worker over to Casa Onqa :(
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Re: Should archtiects be struck off if they are convicted of a serious crime?

Postby corkblow-in » Tue Sep 28, 2010 4:29 pm

With ONQ on that one teak - whatever about the rights, wrongs and principles involved - a minister preventing the issuing of a foreshore license for an incinerator that has gotten planning and epa approval, but is the subject of vociferous opposition from the residents of his constituency just looks like a stunt FF would pull. The optics are very bad.

He should have absented himself from the decision day one.
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