"If the judges interpret the laws themselves, and suffer none else to interpret, they may easily make, of the laws, [a shredded] shipman's hose!" - King James I of England, around 1616.

“No class of the community ought to be allowed freer scope in the expression or publication of opinions as to the capacity, impartiality or integrity of judges than members of the bar. They have the best opportunities of observing and forming a correct judgment. They are in constant attendance on the courts. Hundreds of those who are called on to vote never enter a court-house, or if they do, it is only at intervals as jurors, witnesses or parties. To say that an attorney can only act or speak on this subject under liability to be called to account and to be deprived of his profession and livelihood by the very judge or judges whom he may consider it his duty to attack and expose, is a position too monstrous to be entertained for a moment under our present system,” Justice Sharwood in Ex Parte Steinman and Hensel, 95 Pa 220, 238-39 (1880).

“This case illustrates to me the serious consequences to the Bar itself of not affording the full protections of the First Amendment to its applicants for admission. For this record shows that [the rejected attorney candidate] has many of the qualities that are needed in the American Bar. It shows not only that [the rejected attorney candidate] has followed a high moral, ethical and patriotic course in all of the activities of his life, but also that he combines these more common virtues with the uncommon virtue of courage to stand by his principles at any cost.

It is such men as these who have most greatly honored the profession of the law. The legal profession will lose much of its nobility and its glory if it is not constantly replenished with lawyers like these. To force the Bar to become a group of thoroughly orthodox, time-serving, government-fearing individuals is to humiliate and degrade it.” In Re Anastaplo, 18 Ill. 2d 182, 163 N.E.2d 429 (1959), cert. granted, 362 U.S. 968 (1960), affirmed over strong dissent, 366 U.S. 82 (1961), Justice Black, Chief Justice Douglas and Justice Brennan, dissenting.

" I do not believe that the practice of law is a "privilege" which empowers Government to deny lawyers their constitutional rights. The mere fact that a lawyer has important responsibilities in society does not require or even permit the State to deprive him of those protections of freedom set out in the Bill of Rights for the precise purpose of insuring the independence of the individual against the Government and those acting for the Government”. Lathrop v Donohue, 367 US 820 (1961), Justice Black, dissenting.

"The legal profession must take great care not to emulate the many occupational groups that have managed to convert licensure from a sharp weapon of public defense into blunt instrument of self-enrichment". Walter Gellhorn, "The Abuse of Occupational Licensing", University of Chicago Law Review, Volume 44 Issue 1, September of 1976.

“Because the law requires that judges no matter how corrupt, who do not act in the clear absence of jurisdiction while performing a judicial act, are immune from suit, former Judge Ciavarella will escape liability for the vast majority of his conduct in this action. This is, to be sure, against the popular will, but it is the very oath which he is alleged to have so indecently, cavalierly, baselessly and willfully violated for personal gain that requires this Court to find him immune from suit”, District Judge A. Richard Caputo in H.T., et al, v. Ciavarella, Jr, et al, Case No. 3:09-cv-00286-ARC in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, Document 336, page 18, November 20, 2009. This is about judges who were sentencing kids to juvenile detention for kickbacks.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

The Mokay saga continues

I had an enlightening conversation with Delaware County Supreme Court Clerk Kelly Sanfilippo yesterday.

I asked Ms. Sanfilippo for access to trial exhibits in the Mokay trial that were received by the court on April 7, 2015.

Three of those exhibits are filed with the court and I already obtained copies of them a week ago.

The remaining 270 exhibits were supposed to be on file with the court, as the court marked them "RECEIVED" in the "bench trial minutes" that were not filed until I asked for them from Ms.  Sanfilippo.

Ms. Sanfilippo first told me that she must have somebody from her office to supervise my review of exhibits, and we have set up an appointment for me to review the exhibits for May 27, 2015 at 10:00 am.

Then, Ms. Sanfilippo called my office and left a message that I still have, telling me that Judge Dowd prohibited me to see the exhibits until he renders a judgment in the case because the exhibits are "deemed to be with the judge", as Ms. Sanfilippo put it.

Of course, in answer to my direct question Ms. Sanfilippo has initially told me that nobody has ever checked out the exhibits, and in answer to my direct question when I called her after she left her message from the judge, Ms. Sanfilippo was not sure whether Judge Dowd will be reviewing the exhibits on Wednesday, May 27, 2015.

Yet, I was prohibited to see Exhibits that were filed with the court on April 7, 2015 and became public record anyway.

I asked Ms. Sanfilippo for at least a list of trial exhibits describing what was in the exhibits, because Ms. Sanfilippo trial minutes contained a description only of admitting exhibits "in bulk" -  hundreds at a time.

Ms. Sanfilippo said that she has a list, but won't give it to me - because it was not filed yet.

Of course, when the court "receives" exhibits into evidence (as Judge Dowd did on April 7, 2015), it has the same effect as filing those same exhibits with the court and making them public record, but, apparently, in Delaware County Supreme Court, the whim of a judge and not the law, controls the court clerk Kelly Sanfilippo - especially when it concerns my husband or myself.

What is even more interesting is how Ms. Sanfilippo answered my question as to why I was already given access to three exhibits out of 273, but then Judge Dowd prohibited my access to all of exhibits.

Ms. Sanfilippo said that the 270 exhibits that were not on file with the Delaware County Clerk, even though the trial concluded on April 7, 2015, were not "filed" because, after  the judgment is made by Judge Dowd, those exhibits will be returned to the party who provided the exhibits.

Of course, the majority of the exhibits were marked as "certified records of the Delaware County Clerk", while before trial those "certified records" were kept in Harlem law office without any supervision by the court as to how those records could be tainted, so I wonder how the court even accepted those records as "certified" when they left the custody of the custodian of those certified records and were kept for weeks in Harlem's law office before trial - which, to any court, would irreversibly taint those records.

At this time I am patiently awaiting an answer from Delaware County Supreme Court to my request to provide me a copy of the written decision of Judge Dowd to seal trial exhibits or prohibit my access to them before Judge Dowd comes around to actually look at the evidence that he did not look at when he was admitting it at trial.

As to the secrecy with trial exhibits, I will remind my readers of some of the history with these "trial exhibits".

I tried to have a look at them on or about March 25, 2015.

I was told by Richard Harlem's office that I can only look at them under supervision from Richard Harlem's paralegal Patrick Orr, to preserve their confidence that the certification on certified business records remains intact.  Obviously, it did not concern Richard Harlem that business records certified by the Delaware County Clerk Sharon O'Dell were provided before their submission into evidence not to the court, but directly to Richard Harlem, an interested witness in the case, which tainted them beyond repair.

In fact, my requests to have those records filed with the court for my review were rejected by Judge Dowd, who expected me to submit to blackmail by Richard Harlem that I will not be able to see the "certified business records" from the Delaware County Clerk unless I agree to have my review added to Richard Harlem's bill against my client.

I also have on file an after-trial (!) submission of additional evidence (!) to the court by the "trial attorney" in the ex parte secret Mokay trial, Ms. James Hartmann of Delhi.

Of course, as a seasoned attorney, Mr. Hartmann must know that submission of evidence ended when the trial ended on April 7, 2015.  Yet, seeing the general unlawfulness of how the Mokay trial was handled, James Hartmann went right ahead and made an after-trial submission of evidence anyway.

In that post-trial submission Mr. Hartmann mentioned, as part of his billing to his clients (the Mokay plaintiffs) a 12-minute conversation with Judge Dowd's court attorney (a subpoenaed witness) Claudette Newman.

Of course, none of that was disclosed to me before trial, and my motion to recuse made on other grounds, was rejected off-hand by Judge Dowd who has a history to protect misconduct of his attorney and his own misconduct and to viciously retaliate against people who make motions to recuse against him - and my husband has "erred" even more, by suing Judge Dowd in a pro se federal lawsuit and exposing Judge Dowd's likely lack of mental capacity to preside over court proceedings - which the Mokay ex parte secret trial only confirmed.

So, on top of ex parte communications with Judge Dowd evidence of which is contained in Harlem Law Office's billing statements (for which ex parte communications Richard Harlem wanted my husband to pay the Plaintiffs), James Hartmann admitted to an ex parte communication with Judge Dowd's court attorney on March 27, 2015, 11 days before trial.

That is to add to the ex parte communications of Richard Harlem's attorney David Cabaniss in a related case Neroni v. Harlem, with both judges presiding over the case - Carl Becker and Ferris Lebous, before these judges (without disclosure of ex parte communications) rendered decisions against my husband.

At least, everything falls into a pattern - a fraudulent pattern.

Richard Harlem somehow holds in fear even the New York State Attorney General's office, because the Assistant New York State Attorney General Mary Walsh whose sworn statements about Richard Harlem's and his father's misconduct in how they billed the Blanding Estate in the Otsego County Surrogate's Court and in how they defrauded the court are on file with that court, found it acceptable to perjure herself in her motion to quash my subpoena by stating, under oath, that she did not investigate Richard Harlem's billing and does not know anything about what I was calling her to testify about - and that is Richard Harlem's and his father's knowing pursuit of conflicted representation in a prior case for the sake of greed.

You can see the statements of Mary Walsh made to the Otsego County Surrogate's Court under oath that she has backed out of in front of Delaware County Supreme Court under oath - here.  Mary Walsh's "objection to account" very clearly state improper billing practices of Richard Harlem and his father - proper impeachment evidence against Richard Harlem as the main Plaintiffs' witness at the Mokay trial,  as Mary Walsh well knew when she was backing out of these statements.

Apparently, Mary Walsh backed out of sworn statements she filed with the Otsego County Surrogate's court by her sworn statements filed with the Delaware County Supreme Court - committing fraud upon the court in the process, ironically, in a civil Mokay case that was allegedly about fraud upon the court.

Job security is more important than honor,  attorney ethics or the rule of law for Mary Walsh?  Was she intimidated to back out of her sworn statements to the previous court?  By whom and why is the question - she seemed fearless in the Blanding proceedings...

But, fraud upon the court from "blue blood attorneys" like Richard Harlem (son of a judge), James Hartmann (hired by son of a judge and husband to Nancy Deming, a member of judicial qualification committee in the Appellate Division 3rd Department) and Mary Walsh (Assistant New York State Attorney General) does not count.

And, since greed was the motivating factor from the get-go in the Mokay action, through greed the truth was finally revealed, because Richard Harlem and James Hartmann could not abstain from charging my husband even with their own ex parte communications with judges.

I guess, law, ethics - or elementary shame - does not play a role in Richard Harlem's and James Hartmann's universe.

And - back to the issue of the mysterious trial exhibits admitted in bulk at the stunning speed of 19 seconds per exhibit, it is very convenient for Kelly Sanfilippo to file her "list of exhibits" only after Judge Dowd makes his judgment - and after she returns the alleged exhibits to "the parties" without me or Mr. Neroni ever able to see them.

That takes care of the little problem that the boxes that were submitted as "evidence" at the Mokay trial could have had ANYTHING in them - and Judge Dowd would have gladly admitted them, and would have gladly presented it as evidence of trial.

Even though I ordered it, I will not trust authenticity of the transcript prepared by Brenda Friedel, Judge Dowd's law clerk's Facebook friend,  listed as such on Claudette Newman's Facebook page three days before the Mokay trial (or former Facebook friend, Claudette Newman locked her friend-list after I blogged about that).

And, after the shenanigans of Judge Dowd and his staff that Kelly Sanfilippo obeys as a slave of the judge rather than public servant of the law and of the People of the State of New York, I will not trust a judgment from Judge Dowd with reliance on any claimed "trial exhibits" that the judge obviously did not have the time to read when they were submitted into evidence, and especially because these alleged "trial exhibits", together with the list of those exhibits are somehow secret and may not be shown to me.

Of course, those exhibits were supposed to be marked by the stenographer before being submitted to the court.

But, when trial exhibits were marked (if they were) by the stenographer who was Facebook friend of Judge Dowd's law clerk, when Judge Dowd, his law clerk and his secretary were all called as witnesses at the trial, because of Richard Harlem's billing of his ex parte communication with the chambers as part of "damages", does not inspire any trust in authenticity of the trial exhibits.

Court employees are known to go to great lengths to keep their jobs in the hard economic times, as behavior of Kelly Sanfilippo, as one of examples, shows.

The only word that begs to be pronounced to characterize this whole situation and its participants?


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