Falsifying time sheets may be a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on how much in unearned public money was stolen.
For example, recently two employees of the town of Middletown, NY, were charged with felonies and misdemeanors for falsifying time sheets.
That was considered theft of public funds.
Yet, when three attorney disciplinary prosecutors of the Attorney Grievance Committee of the Appellate Division, 3rd Department (New York):
- Elizabeth Devane;
- Steven Zayas; and
- Peter Torncello (the Committee's Chief Attorney before the resignation)
were implicated in doing the same, they were only allowed to quietly resign, were not prosecuted criminally or disciplined as lawyers.
While Elizabeth Devane is not even listed as an ever-licensed attorney in New York state, Peter Torncello continues to toil in private practice:
and Steven Zayas is even allowed to continue in public service,
possibly, further engaging in theft of public funds, since they were not deterred by prosecution for their previous misdeeds.
In 2015, Chief Judge's own counsel Christina Ryba was fired for unethical conduct, but was never disciplined as an attorney and was allowed to become a judge, which requires to have a valid law license.
Ryba was not prosecuted either by criminal prosecutors - for elections fraud - nor by attorney disciplinary prosecutors, nor by the New York State Commission for Judicial Conduct.
Apparently, the ethical probe that Ryba's Republican opponents wanted amounted to nothing.
Nor were there any disciplinary probes of the wife of the Chief Administrative Judge for the State of New York, Otsego County Attorney Ellen Coccoma, former member of the Attorney Grievance Committee of the Appellate Division, 3rd Judicial Department, who, while being a full-time County Attorney, engages in private practice on the side during her work time.
Otsego County responded to my FOIL requests for her time-sheets by claiming that they simply don't have them.
Ellen Coccoma, as the County Attorney, was the legal advisor for that response. Attorney rules of professional conduct prohibiting participation in a conflicted representation, apparently, did not apply to Ellen Coccoma, as wife of a high-ranking New York State judge.
At this time, New York State Court Administration, at the same time,
- is stalling my FOIL requests for time sheets of the new Chief Attorney of the Attorney Grievance Committee, Monica Duffy, as well as some other attorneys of the Committee and some judges who were, according to my information, skipping work to participate in wining and dining with some attorneys from Otsego, Delaware and Chenango Counties - and,
- is trying to push through "mandatory discovery orders" in criminal proceedings that are meant to pull the wool over the eyes of the public and create an impression that prosecutors - all prosecutors - in the state of New York are allegedly accountable for their misdeeds, see my public comments on that:
They are not.
The time-sheets prosecutions against town employees, but not against attorney disciplinary prosecutors prove that.
The lack of disciplinary prosecutions against attorney disciplinary prosecutors who falsify timesheets and are even fired for unethical conduct and defrauding voters, prove that.