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Lawyer accused of misconduct in residential school claims faces summer hearings

The Law Society of Upper Canada has set aside nearly six weeks — beginning in June — to hear allegations against Kenora lawyer Doug Keshen, who is accused of professional misconduct in his dealings with some residential school survivors.

Victims allege Kenora lawyer Doug Keshen transferred their settlement money to himself

(CBC)

The Law Society of Upper Canada has set aside nearly six weeks — beginning in June — to hear allegations against Kenora lawyer Doug Keshen, who is accused of professional misconduct in his dealings with some residential school survivors.

Keshen is alleged to have transferred thousands of dollars from residential school clients to himself.

The lawyer, who works for several First Nations in the Treaty 3 area of northwestern Ontario, has denied the allegations.

The Law Society has received complaints that Keshen arranged high-interest loans for clients, secured against anticipated residential school settlement funds, which is prohibited by the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement. 

There are also allegations that Keshen withdrew legal fees and disbursements from survivors' settlement funds without sending them a bill or setting out what the fees would be.

Nearly two dozen complainants allege Keshen failed to interview them about their claims and failed to communicate with them throughout the process.

The hearings are expected to take place in Kenora, beginning on June 27. More hearing dates will be set as the case goes along, the Law Society states.

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