I said "alleged" because suspension of an attorney, same as an admission, is a public court order, and, while I am listed in that court as "suspended", there is no such public court order - or even a public docket on Pacer.gov showing that there is a disciplinary case against me.
That was true in 2015, 2016, and that remains true today.
Here is the scan of all cases where I appeared as an attorney or a party (or both), and there is no case there that started in November of 2015, after I was (illegally) suspended in New York State for making motions to recuse on behalf of my indigent clients.
While the Northern District of New York continues to play game with hidden court dockets, a scandal is currently unraveling in New York State where a Nassau County legislator #LauraCurran raised the issue that Nassau County Courts did the same thing as the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York did in my case - the courts are hiding court dockets.
And, while it was obviously ok in my case for the NDNY court to play these games with my hidden docket and claim that I am somehow suspended - while now public docket or order of suspension was available, when New York State Court were caught red-handed in hiding court docket, the reaction of state court administrators was different.
First, the press picked up on those hidden dockets, and ran not just one, but two articles so far about it, here and here - before New York State Court Administration reacted.
The press indicated that it is not clear HOW MANY of hidden court dockets exist - how many of these dockets New York State Courts (where all judges are sworn to uphold the U.S. and New York State Constitution and federal and state law, as well as Canons of Judicial Ethics, engaged in this clear fraud upon the public and violation of their oaths of office).
Moreover, John Ferretti who was portrayed by the press as a "Chief Deputy Clerk", but who is listed on New York State attorney registration website as THE Nassau County Clerk
claimed that he "does not know", for how long the "practice" of hiding certain court dockets was going on in Nassau County.
John Ferretti, of course, is not Nassau County Clerk.
Maureen O'Connell is listed as such,
Maureen O'Connell is also an attorney "with no record of public discipline".
"No record" in New York courts is becoming a new pun, isn't it?
Maureen O'Connell said nothing about the ongoing scandal with missing court dockets on her webpage.
Look what Maureen O'Connell tells us on her webpage:
And, if he lied to the public on that - and I am sure he did, because the County Clerk's office is where all cases are filed, and where the actual sealing was taking place - he engaged in untruthful conduct making John Ferretti unfit to be an attorney.
I will not hold my breath though to wait until disbarment of John Ferretti, as I am sure the system that "regulates" attorneys will protect "their own" - as it always does in New York, without fail, and especially given how much John Ferretti knows about the dirty little or not-so-little dealings in courts.
And, if that practice exists in Nassau County, I wonder whether it exists in all other courts in the State of New York.
Of course, now that the scandal is raging in the press, New York Chief Administrative Judge Lawrence Marks had to say something, so he said that the practice of hiding court dockets, if it really is like that, is "troubling".
Of course, it is not just "troubling", but, as the press had no trouble pointing out, unconstitutional - as held in the 2nd Circuit 13 years ago (having jurisdiction over New York), and in 11th Circuit:
Here is another article describing how dockets are being hidden in federal trial courts.
And, here are the decisions of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit in U.S. v Valenti in 1993 and of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit in Hartford Courant Co. v. Pellegrino in 2004 ruling that hiding court dockets from the public is unconstitutional.
I know wonder whether New York State Courts will now reveal to the public:
- all index numbers concealed over, let's say, 50 years going back;
- all names of parties and their attorneys involved in knowingly engaging in litigating cases on secret dockets; and, of course,
- all names of judges who ordered such sealing of dockets.
And, while I will not hold my breath as to discipline of such judges and such attorneys, it will be interesting to see how Nassau Courts and New York State Court Administration will be getting out of this mess.
Right now the New York State Court Administration - both the Chief Judge Janet DiFiore with her "Court Excellence" program, and the Chief Administrative Judge Lawrence Marks, pretended that they have no control over how the lower court judges administrate their court dockets.
Even though they are chief administrators of the court setting policies on how to administer those same court dockets - and hiding many court cases obviously denotes a policy.
- do something illegal; and, when caught red-handed
- try to hide it and have its personnel - an attorney no less, whose license is "regulated" by the courts - lie about it.