According to the media reports, disciplinary filings were just made against two judges in Philadelphia who fixed a case for the son of a judge.
Here, sons of judges rock to the point that no law applies to whatever they are doing.
I wrote on this blog about shenanigans of son of a judge Richard Harlem, about misconduct of a son of a judge Michael Getman.
Son of a judge Richard Harlem, landlord to NY Senator James Seward and client to the law firm employing NY Senator Neil Breslin, does not have to know the law or know how to present law, facts, evidence or even to be truthful in his submissions. He will still win and nobody will dare to punish him.
Richard Harlem and is (now late) father Robert Harlem were caught by the New York State Attorney General in a scheme to defraud the Surrogate's Court and conceal Robert Harlem's role in practicing law while being a sitting Supreme Court justice, involving his son (an attorney), his court secretary and his court law clerk in signing the will and codicils as witnesses, and where Robert Harlem bequeathed to himself (another ethical no-no) hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of assets, plus made himself a paid third co-executor and made the trust where he was a salaried trustee, recipient of the residual estate counting in the millions of dollars.
Son of a judge Michael Getman was never disciplined for his misconduct pertaining to a charity where the New York State Attorney General got to the point of filing a case against him and his father - and both escaped with a slap on the wrist and no criminal, civil or disciplinary liability.
No judges so far were disciplined for fixing the case for Richard and Robert Harlems, a case (read my blog post the Mokay saga) which, had the law been applied, would have been dismissed 8 years ago with sanctions against attorneys who brought it.
Once again, what is a disciplinary violation in PA, is business as usual in NY.
In PA, judges who fix cases for sons of judges through back room dealings, are in hot water.
In NY, three (!) judges were caught in ex parte communications with Richard Harlem and his hired attorneys, ALL THREE retaliated by sanctions and imposition of attorney fees against attorney and her husband who confronted them about the ex parte communications - and the Judicial Conduct Commission has not filed disciplinary charges against ANY of these three judges:
- Carl F. Becker;
- Ferris Lebous;
- Kevin Dowd
One can only guess how much ex parte communication could have been going on without those ex partes reflected in the billing.
Yet, the trend appears to emerge that judges do not have such an easy way out anymore when they commit misconduct - not in small part because of public outcry and growing public awareness of the issue and pervasiveness of judicial misconduct in the American justice system on the state and federal levels.
So - will we soon see disciplinary charges filed against Carl F. Becker? I doubt it because he is resigning as of July 31, 2015, even though anything is possible, because the New York State Judicial Conduct Commission did go recently after a former judge, Bryan Hedges, AFTER his resignation from the bench and did discipline him, precluding him from holding any judicial office ever again.
Against Ferris Lebous and Kevin Dowd? Future will show.