"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.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Trial rules of Kevin Dowd: defaults of parties are declared and parties' rights are determined based on how well-liked by the judge and the judge's law clerk are the parties' attorneys

Plaintiffs did not show up to the Mokay trial on damages - held ex parte by Judge Kevin Dowd on April 7, 2015 during my documented medical leave due to back injury (I was the attorney of record fo the defendant Frederick Neroni).

That much is demonstrated by the front page of the transcript of that trial not showing appearances of the Plaintiffs.

Nor are appearances of plaintiffs mentioned anywhere in the transcript.

Nor did any of the plaintiffs testify in the trial that they, indeed, suffered any damages and acknowledged fees of their attorney Richard Harlem.

It is interesting to mention that Judge Dowd had the court personnel "scan the building" and reported on record that, after the court building was "scanned", and no traces of not only me, but defendant Mr. Neroni, was found, Mr. Neroni was found in default and as having waived his rights to a jury trial.

Defendant Connie Mokay was not present, but Judge Dowd did not declare that she waived her rights.

Instead, Judge Dowd accepted her attorney's explanation Michael Getman's explanation that Connie Mokay, one of the "trio" of tortfeasors, the person who urged her husband, decedent Andrew Mokay, not to transfer properties to his children at the threat that she will leave him (something the decedent did not disclose to his then attorney Frederick Neroni), now had interests that are "more aligned with the plaintiffs".

Judge Dowd called Connie Mokay's attorney "Mike" and let "Mike" go from the trial, accepting his explanations that Connie Mokay, even though "formally" she is still a defendant in the action - to prevent me or Mr. Neroni from raising objections - she is in reality only an "interested party", a "spectator", and her interests are "more aligned with the plaintiffs".

Of course, the "alignment" argument was complete gibberish and made no sense legally, but Judge Dowd accepted it anyway.

Connie Mokay who never showed up to the trial on damages, and who admitted to liability in an affidavit admittedly drafted by Richard Harlem, attorney for the plaintiffs, was excused from trial without pronouncement of default.

Her attorney "Mike" was also excused by Judge Dowd.

Yet, Defendant Fred Neroni whose attorney was on a legitimate medical leave because of a back injury, was not excused, his absence was noted as a waiver of his rights to a jury trial, the case proceeded in the absence of ANY PARTIES, including the plaintiffs, and Judge Dowd rubber-stamped all requests made by Plaintiffs son-of-a-judge attorney Richard Harlem.

Therefore, yet another trial rule of Judge Kevin Dowd - weasel yourself into the favor of the judge, or even better, into the good graces of judge's law clerk Claudette Newman whom the judge defends to the end of all law, ethics and propriety, no matter what she does. 

Do it by flaunting and stressing either your birth (Richard Harlem is a son of a judge, and kept for years a mention of the fact that Robert Harlem is a retired judge on his law firm's letterhead), or by other political connections (Richard Harlem is landlord to NYS Senator James Seward's district office in Oneonta, NY), or by affiliation with judicial qualifications committees (James Hartmann, trial attorney for the plaintiffs, is married to Nancy Deming, member of judicial qualifications committee in the Appellate Division Third Department), or by your job for the government and your bloodline (Michael Getman is the Chief Assistant District Attorney of Otsego County AND a son of a judge).

If, on the other hand, you happen to be a litigant or attorney who complained about Judge Dowd to the NYS Commission for Judicial Conduct (I did, many times) or sued him (my husband did) - then gloves are off and all laws are off, and you are a "disgusting human being" (Judge Dowd's words toward a pro se litigant who dared file a motion to recuse Judge Dowd due to conflict of interest created by his law clerk by having the pro se party's children in her house which counts as an ex parte communication).

Remember this "default" rule when entering "Judge Dowd's" courtroom - and especially if you have a misfortune of getting sick on a trial date.

1 comment: