"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.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Attorney misconduct of the Florida Bar in prosecuting attorney misconduct - what else is new

I've just submitted (two days ago) a motion for rehearing of my constitutional appeal as of right in my disciplinary case, the last step before going to the U.S. Supreme Court.

I will publish the entire motion and comment on it in a separate blog, today or tomorrow.

One of the prominent issues in my case was misconduct of New York State disciplinary authority in prosecuting me for alleged attorney misconduct - where New York State disciplinary authorities actually refused to prosecute themselves for multiple disciplinary violations and dismissed complaints against themselves.

A similar situation of misconduct is currently unfolding in Florida.

There, an attorney who was consulted about a disciplinary case by the subjects of the disciplinary investigation and prosecution, then switched sides and ghost-wrote an affidavit for the prosecutors, while reportedly making false claims in that affidavit into the bargain.

The lawyers - same as I did in my case - requested dismissal of the disciplinary proceedings based on prosecutorial misconduct, because it goes without saying that an attorney misconduct proceeding cannot be prosecuted with the help of attorney misconduct.

Here, attorney misconduct was apparent.

1) There was a conflict of interest in the attorney initially contacted about representing the defense side to switch to the prosecution side;

2) There was misconduct of the prosecution side to accept such help and allow the former defense attorney in the same case to ghost-write a pleading for the prosecution;

3) There is misconduct on the side of the former defense attorney and the disciplinary prosecutors to submit such a pleading to the court, and to submit a false affidavit to the court.

Definitely, means by which the government acts, matter.

And definitely, the attorneys who were and still are subjects of investigation and prosecution in Florida, irrespective of whether they actually did or did not do anything wrong, were deprived of their due process right of an impartial prosecutor, and to have elementary honesty in proceedings.

A disciplinary prosecutor should be squeaky clean and practice what he preaches, first and foremost.

Shouldn't he?

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