"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, March 26, 2016

Will SDNY Judge Shira Scheindlin STILL be criminally prosecuted for practicing law on the bench, even if she is running off the bench?

I recently blogged about large law firms that use employment of judicial law clerks as "live shields" to protect and drum up their business, mentioning that one of the law clerks employed by BOIES, SCHILLER & FLEXNER LLP, a large law firm that employes law clerks apparently from all courts where it practices - is #SDNYJudgeShiraScheindlin's law clerk.

I also blogged about Judge Scheindlin's outrageous misconduct on the bench and raised the question, on January 6, 2016, why Judge Scheindlin was not criminally prosecuted under the applicable federal statute making it a high misdemeanor, an impeachable offense for a judge, to practice law - while Judge Scheindlin was removed from a case for giving legal advice to one party as to how to file a new lawsuit against the other.

On March 23, 2016, it was reported that Judge Shira Scheindlin announced that she is "resigning" from the federal bench of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, effective April 29, 2016, in order - allegedly - to work in private practice for an undisclosed New York City law firm.

Now, Judge Scheindlin is now paid $203,000 a year, with full benefits and tremendous power she is weilding.

If she is leaving that position, that means that either the "undisclosed law firm" which she is ready to join on April 29, 2016, offered her more - and the question is, for what - for fixing cases in her court with her fellow judges?

Or, that Judge Scheindlin was simply booted for her misconduct that the 2nd Circuit did not want to acknowledge in the order of removal of Scheindlin, but that is clear from the description in that order of removal of what she did, as compared to the text of the criminal statute, 28 U.S.C. 454, see also my blog about it here.

Whatever the reason for Judge Scheindlin's hasty departure from the bench - good riddance.

And, by resigning, I do not believe that Judge Scheindlin removed herself from the reach of criminal investigation and prosecution under 28 U.S.C. 454.

In my opinion, she must be criminally investigated and prosecuted under 28 U.S.C. 454 to show to the public that the law equally applies to judges, as it applies to us mere mortals.

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