What a pleasure to see my old compadre Stuart Hendin (Franks passim, ad nauseam) rehabilitated and reinvented as a “scholar” at the University of Ottawa!
The coruscating legalist was recently quoted in a Toronto Star piece about terrorist attacks in Kabul, where “Professor Hendin,” was “advising and mentoring the ministry of justice in Afghanistan.”
Hendin’s LinkedIn entry informs us that in addition to his professorial duties, Stu teaches at the Royal Military College in Kingston, lecturing the “principles and application of morality, ethics and professional military leadership.”
Shurely this cannot be the same Stu Hendin, Byron Muldoon sycophant and disbarred legalist, who appropriated tens of thousands of dollars from unsuspecting clients?
Alas, it is he. Stu Hendin, lobbyist, Hy’s power luncher, wheeler-about-town in his black Beemer with red dip plates, and living the vida loca in his Rockcliffe mansion.
Back in those salad days, Stu’s office was a shrine to his Tory masters, the walls adorned with dozens of pics of himself with benefactors Byron and Imelda Muldoon and party hacks Ray Hnatyshyn and Don Mazankowski.
Even as Byron fled Ottawa in a hail of bullets, he appointed Stu to the board of VIA Rail. His wife, Judith, an Imelda chum, landed a cushy sinecure on the National Parole Board. (Muldoon also got Hendin awarded a “Queen’s Counsel” (QC), the utterly useless honorific that the feds stopped handing the moment Byron was out the door in ’93.)
By the mid-nineties, with his Tory meal tickets in exile, Stu was reduced to sucking up to local diplomats, scoring honourary consul credentials and free parking from Lesotho and the Central African Republic.
Ultimately, the hostile environment of Liberal Ottawa took its toll. The baksheesh dried up, as did Hendin’s marriage and, in 2001, Judith bailed on Stu and their law firm.
A few months later, in the hole by $607,070, Stu declared bankruptcy.
It later transpired that Stu had been helping himself to clients’ trust funds to the tune of $108,000. When the clients threatened to squawk to LSUC, Stu took preemptive measures, turning himself in with a soft-shoe routine about depression, throw myself on your mercy, etc.
The law society allowed him to resign on condition he agree not to practice law in Ontario again.
But never count a Tory hack out.
Stu went back to school, reinvented himself as an expert in international humanitarian law (wat dat?!—ed.), paid off the dough he’d pilfered, plus $11,236.60 he owed the law society and applied for readmission to the bar.
LSUC let him back in in 2011, although he’s still not permitted to hold a trust account.
Sadly, his New York State and D.C. tickets remain punched. (Stu used to brag that he could appear before the U.S. Supreme Court, but the American law societies aren’t as forgiving as Ontario’s and Stu is still off the books.)
Fortunately, Afghanistan’s ministry of justice is more appreciative of his fine legal mind. A Frank tip of the pakol to Stu for a heartwarming comeback story!