Judge sends B.C. man to jail for practicing law without degree

NANAIMO, B.C. - A Vancouver Island man is heading to jail for repeatedly flouting orders not to practise law without a degree.

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Ralph Goodwin was found in contempt of court in December when a judge said he "flagrantly" defied a 2013 order requiring him to stop giving legal advice and representing himself as a "chancellor of laws" or a "law speaker."

The B.C. Law Society launched a lawsuit against 69-year-old Goodwin, saying he provided legal services for a fee or the expectation of a fee.

Goodwin did not defend himself against either the order or the contempt of court charges, arguing instead that the court had no authority over him.

B.C. Supreme Court Justice George MacIntosh says in his ruling that a jail sentence is necessary because Goodwin has ignored previous court orders.

Goodwin must serve 30 days behind bars and then comply with previous court orders or he could face another contempt of court order.



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