Archive for the ‘Judge charged’ Category

Family Court judge to face disciplinary hearing in December

September 20, 2013

The Nevada Commission on Judicial Discipline has set a Dec. 2 public hearing in Las Vegas into allegations Family Court Judge Steven Jones mishandled a romantic relationship with a prosecutor who appeared before him.

The hearing had been scheduled for July 29, but Jones and his lawyers mounted an 11th-hour campaign at the Nevada Supreme Court and District Court to block it.

Both courts denied the judge’s bid, but the hearing had to be put off amid the legal wrangling.
Jones contended the judicial commission failed to follow its own rules when investigating him and violated his due process rights.

Commission lawyers maintained the judge’s rights were protected and his last-minute effort to derail the disciplinary proceedings was a ploy to avoid sanctions.

According to a 12-count complaint filed by commission lawyers in December, former Deputy District Attorney Lisa Willardson “actively litigated cases” in the judge’s courtroom while she maintained a relationship with him in 2011. Jones didn’t disqualify himself from her cases.

The Nevada State Bar, which regulates lawyers, declined to discipline Willardson, who was fired from the district attorney’s office after the relationship was revealed.

The professional organization sent her a “letter of caution” that suggested her conduct “undermined” public trust in the justice system.

Jones has denied the misconduct allegations, first brought to light in a 2011 Las Vegas Review-Journal story.

The judicial commission suspended Jones in November after a federal grand jury charged him with participating in a $3 million investment fraud scheme.

Jones, who is to stand trial in the criminal case March 3, has continued to receive his $200,000 annual salary.

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Family Court judge to face disciplinary hearing in December

See Also:
Judge Jones tries to stop discipline hearing over alleged mishandled relationship

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Deal allows Galveston judge replacement

June 22, 2013

GALVESTON – Indicted Galveston County Court-at-Law Judge Christopher Dupuy agreed Thursday to a deal allowing a replacement judge to be named until criminal and civil cases against him are resolved.

Although Dupuy is under suspension by the State Commission on Judicial Conduct, a second suspension order was sought in a civil lawsuit brought by Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott and local attorney Greg Hughes.

The suspension in the civil lawsuit will allow visiting District Judge Robert Kern of Fort Bend County to appoint a temporary replacement in County Court-at-Law Court No. 3.

Noting that Dupuy is already suspended, Assistant Attorney General David Glickler called the second suspension “an exercise in legal gymnastics.”

Dupuy was indicted last month on eight criminal charges relating to his conduct in office, including two felony charges of official oppression. A Galveston County grand jury issued a ninth indictment last week accusing Dupuy of improperly practicing law as a sitting judge.

Dupuy would be removed permanently and automatically from office if convicted of one of the felony charges.

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Deal allows Galveston judge replacement

See Also:
Indicted Texas Judge’s Ex-Finance Changes Her Story

Retraction and Apology to District Judge Kerry Neves of Texas

LOS ANGELES COUNTY SUPERIOR COURT JUDGE HOLLY FUJIE ACCUSED OF MISAPPROPRIATION OF FUNDS

October 31, 2012

Documents filed in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia reveal that Holly Fujie of Los Angeles allegedly engaged in predicate acts of racketeering through and by means of money laundering, mail and bank fraud, as well as conversion of funds.

A former partner of Los Angeles-based Buchalter Nemer — who California Governor Jerry Brown appointed to the Los Angeles County Superior Court bench under questionable circumstances involving his cousin, former California Public Utility Commisioner Geoff Brown — is accused in federal court of committing myriad financial crimes and acts of fraud.

The lawsuit, filed as a civil-racketeering action by Marina Del Rey-based community activist Daniel Dydzak, also names as a defendant Bet Tzedek Legal Services of Los Angeles and Eric George — the son of the controversial former chief justice of California, Ronald George.

Both Holly Fujie and Eric George were directors of Bet Tzedek, an entity which obtained millions of dollars from the various trusts funds maintained and operated by the State Bar of California, as well as funds from the California Bar Foundation, where Holly Fujie presently serves as the vice-president.

Both the State Bar of California and the California Bar Foundation are under the direct control of the California Supreme Court.

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LOS ANGELES COUNTY SUPERIOR COURT JUDGE HOLLY FUJIE ACCUSED OF MISAPPROPRIATION OF FUNDS

Discipline deserved in case of disgraced Judge Orie Melvin

September 7, 2012

Judicial opinions often are laced with jargon and technical minutiae that make them indecipherable to laymen.

Not so in a ruling this week by the state Court of Judicial Discipline. President Judge Robert E.J. Curran made plain the court’s dismay with suspended Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin. In the process, the court contributed to a string of precedents that have been established in the prosecution of the judge and her two sisters for alleged and, in the case of former state Sen. Jane Orie, confirmed corruption.

Justice Orie Melvin was removed from the court in May, when she was charged with allegedly using her publicly paid judicial staff to conduct political work in her pursuit of a Supreme Court seat in 2003 and 2009.

Last week the Court of Judicial Discipline found that Justice Orie Melvin should not be paid while awaiting the outcome of her case.

“We see this respondent as so single-mindedly occupied with achieving personal aggrandizement that she pressured, intimidated and bullied her clerks and secretaries into performing work on her political campaigns,” Curran wrote for the 5-1 majority. “… “We cannot leave this subject without mentioning that assertions that (Justice Orie Melvin) did not know what her sisters were saying and doing and, for that matter, what her staff and her sister’s staff were doing, test the patience of the court.”

Jane Orie, the former senator, is serving a 2½-to-10-year sentence for using her judicial staff for political work on her own and her sister’s campaigns. Janine Orie, a third sister and the judge’s chief of staff, has been charged and will be tried with the judge in Allegheny County.

Full Article and Source:
Discipline deserved in case of disgraced Judge Orie Melvin

See Also:
Pennsylvania Supreme Court rules no out-of-county judge for Joan Orie Melvin trial

Associate probate judge named in Franklin County

August 31, 2012

CARNESVILLE, Ga. — Franklin County Probate Judge Eddie Fowler has appointed the county attorney to serve as associate probate judge.

At a called Franklin County Board of Commissioners meeting Tuesday night, county attorney Bubba Samuels said he will serve as the associate probate judge for the foreseeable future. Fowler swore in Samuels on Monday. Fowler and Samuels then signed the order appointing Samuels as the associate judge.

“The appointment requires the approval of the county governing authority,” Samuels told the county commission. “We’re informed by the (Georgia) Judicial Qualifications Commission that they approve of this arrangement to ensure that the business of the probate judge’s office goes on. I’ve also spoke with Probate Judge-elect Ken Eavenson, and he agrees this is the best course of action at this time.”

Eavenson was elected Aug. 21 as the new probate judge, but his term does not begin until January.

Samuels emphasized that Fowler is still the probate judge at this time. As a constitutional officer, Fowler is not under county authority, but the board of commissioners did need to approve his appointment of Samuels. That approval was unanimous Tuesday evening.

The move comes, Samuels said, as a decision of Fowler, who was arrested last week and charged with misdemeanor sexual battery. Fowler is out of custody on bond and has not been in the probate judge’s office since his arrest. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation continues to look into the case.

Full Article & Source:
Associate probate judge named in Franklin County

Probate judge faces charge in Franklin County

August 29, 2012

CARNESVILLE – A Franklin County Probate Judge faces one count of sexual battery in an ongoing investigation.

According to Georgia Bureau of Investigation Special Agent In Charge Jim Fullington, the agency charged 71-year-old Judge Eddie Fowler with the one misdemeanor count last Tuesday night.

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Probate judge faces charge in Franklin County

Retiring probate judge arrested

August 24, 2012

Retiring Franklin County Probate Judge Eddie Fowler has been arrested and charged with sexual battery.

Franklin County Sheriff Stevie Thomas said case has been turned over to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

Fowler was reportedly taken into custody late Tuesday after an investigation by the GBI, according to GBI Agent in Charge Jim Fullington.

“On Monday, August 20th, we were requested by the Franklin County Sheriff’s department to look into allegations of sexual battery,” Fullington said. “On Tuesday evening, Mr. Fowler was taken into custody and charged with one count of sexual battery. He was later released on bond from the Franklin County Detention Center.”

Fullington said the charge is a misdemeanor offense, but the investigation is continuing.

Fowler’s arrest came the day voters elected his successor. Tuesday, Franklin County Deputy Assistant Sheriff Ken Eavenson won the post over challenger Jay Baskins. Eavenson, however, does not take office until Jan. 1.

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Retiring probate judge arrested

Judge booted after making sexual advances

August 14, 2012

HARRISBURG — A former Allegheny County judge was removed from office and barred from serving on the bench last month, after he was convicted earlier this year of sexually assaulting two women in his chambers.

The Pennsylvania Court of Judicial Discipline, which hears official complaints against judges who violate the state constitution and judicial code, said former Magistrate Judge Ross Cioppa used his position to engage in a “tawdry, coercive pursuit of sexual liberties,” which included kissing and embracing two women who appeared before his bench. On both occasions, he promised to rule in favor of the women, if they went along with his advances, according to court documents.

“It is not open to question that (Cioppa’s) conduct was intended to affect a specific outcome — he promised that it would,” the board concluded, adding that the judge’s actions prejudiced the proper administration of justice.

Full Article and Source:
Judge booted after making sexual advances

Pennsylvania Supreme Court rules no out-of-county judge for Joan Orie Melvin trial

July 30, 2012

HARRISBURG — The state Supreme Court has denied Justice Joan Orie Melvin’s request for judge from outside Allegheny County to hear the criminal corruption charges against her.

Justice Melvin’s colleagues on the state’s highest court responded to her motion in an order issued Tuesday.

Her attorneys had asked that an out-of-county judge be appointed because Justice Melvin previously served in the Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas and because one of her former staff members who allegedly did campaign work is married to another common pleas judge.

Judge Jeffrey A. Manning has twice rejected the request.

Full Article and Source:
Pennsylvania Supreme Court rules no out-of-county judge for Joan Orie Melvin trial

Judge surrenders, slips out back

July 10, 2012

Former Wake County District Court Judge Kristin Ruth surrendered to authorities Friday morning on a misdemeanor charge of willfully neglecting to discharge the duties of her office.

Ruth was released on her signature by a magistrate at the Public Safety Center in downtown Raleigh after arriving an hour before she was expected. Learning that an ABC11 television crew was waiting in the lobby, Ruth’s attorney spoke with officials, and she was allowed to slip out the back through a secure area of the Public Safety Center.

Ruth, was indicted by a Wake County grand jury earlier this week. Also charged are criminal defense attorney James Crouch and his legal assistant.

The indictments charge Crouch with felony conspiracy, obstruction of justice, and altering documents. He signed a $50,000 bond and was released Wednesday pending his trial.

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Judge surrenders, slips out back