Archive for the ‘Texas’ Category

Local attorney disciplined for professional misconduct

November 17, 2013

A Victoria attorney accepted a public reprimand from the Commission for Lawyer Discipline for not returning an unearned fee.

Attorney Mark Davis paid restitution to the man who filed the grievance when the judgment was issued Sept. 11. It was unclear in the ruling how much was paid.

The Advocate attempted to reach Davis daily beginning Nov. 7. He did not return phone calls.

Raja Hugh Belleth hired Davis in June 2011 to represent him in a divorce case filed in Harris County. He agreed to pay an advance fee of $5,000 and $200 per hour for other legal services.

After Belleth’s wife filed the divorce petition in June 2011, she took no further action. Belleth tried to terminate Davis’ representation as well as request a refund Nov. 2, 2011, according to the grievance petition.

When Belleth did not hear back, he hired another attorney, who emailed Davis on Nov. 16, 2011 to request the unused funds.

Davis replied that he was finalizing an invoice and would return the unused retainer, but it never arrived in the mail, according to the petition.

On Jan. 2, Belleth emailed Davis about the matter again. He received no response.
Court documents also show Davis did not respond to the Aug. 29 grievance in a timely manner.

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Local attorney disciplined for professional misconduct

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Nursing home abuse and neglect on the rise in Texas

November 10, 2013

A KVUE Defenders investigation uncovered cases of nursing home neglect on the rise across Texas. The investigation also discovered that facilities repeatedly cited for violations rarely see their contracts terminated with the state, despite getting millions in taxpayer dollars.

One of those abused included 97-year-old Minnie Graham. Her granddaughter Shirley Ballard considered her a saint.
 
“She would do anything for anybody. She would give you the shirt off her back,” Ballard said.
 
When Graham’s dementia took its toll a few years ago, her family put her in a Dallas-area nursing home.
 
After noticing bruises on her hands and face, they put a clock in her room equipped with a hidden camera.
 
A few days later, they reviewed the video in horror. They saw two nursing home aids slapping her on separate occasions. Video also showed a male aid shoving her head in the bed and then later flips Graham the middle finger.
 
Ballard said it was difficult to watch.
 
“It was hurtful that they would do that to her, because they don’t know her like I know her,” Ballard said.
 
Both aids were fired and charged with elderly abuse. Graham died about a month after the video was recorded.
 
According to the Department of Aging and Disability Services (DADS), deficiencies involving Texas nursing homes jumped from 14,215 in 2011 to 15,113 in 2012. The most severe violations, which put patients in immediate danger, increased by 35 percent.
 
“This is crisis mode right now for Texas,” said Brian Lee, executive director for Families for Better Care.
 
Earlier this year, the nonprofit released what it says is the first comprehensive state-by-state review of nursing home care.
 
It calculated its grades using data from Medicaid. The analysis involved staffing numbers, inspections, deficiencies and complaints.
 
Texas failed.

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Nursing home abuse and neglect on the rise in Texas

November lawyer discipline – 2 from Houston, 14 other Texans

November 8, 2013

Disciplinary Actions — November 2013 list (verbatim from the State Bar of Texas)
General questions regarding attorney discipline should be directed to the Chief Disciplinary Counsel’s Office, toll-free (877) 953-5535 or (512) 453-5535. The Board of Disciplinary Appeals may be reached at (512) 475-1578. Information and copies of actual orders are available at www.txboda.org. The State Commission on Judicial Conduct may be contacted toll-free, (877) 228-5750 or (512) 463-5533. Please note that persons disciplined by the Commission on Judicial Conduct are not necessarily licensed attorneys.

HOUSTON AREA

REINSTATEMENTS
On Oct. 1, 2013, McCuller C. Stephens III [#19158750], 56, of Houston, filed a petition in the 295th District Court of Harris County (Cause No. 2013-58703) for reinstatement as a member of the State Bar of Texas.

SUSPENSIONS
A notice in the October issue indicated that David Patrick Smitherman [#24027992], 39, of Houston, received a three-year partially probated suspension on July 19, 2013, and that Smitherman had filed a notice of appeal. As the result of an order signed by the trial judge, the sanctions set forth in the judgment have been stayed during the pendency of the appeal, so that Smitherman has not been placed on suspension.  At all times since the judgment was signed on July 19, Smitherman has been in good standing with the Bar, and he remains in good standing at the present time.
On Sept. 5, 2013, Quinon A. Brooker [#24053771], 36, of Houston, accepted a one-year fully probated suspension effective Aug. 15, 2013. An evidentiary panel of the District 4 Grievance Committee found that in representing his client, Brooker neglected the legal matter entrusted to him. Brooker failed to keep his client reasonably informed about the status of her civil suit and failed to promptly comply with reasonable requests for information. Brooker violated Rules 1.01(b)(1) and 1.03(a). He was ordered to pay $2,500 in restitution and $1,000 in attorneys’ fees and direct expenses.

REST OF THE STATE

DISBARMENTS
On June 28, 2013, Craig F. Sandling [#17621700], 59, of Austin, was disbarred. An evidentiary panel of the District 9 Grievance Committee found that complainant hired Sandling on or about March 9, 2012, to secure his release from jail and to represent him in five criminal cases. Complainant paid Sandling $29,500, of which $20,000 was an advanced fee for Sandling to represent complainant in the criminal cases, and the remaining $9,500 was paid to a bail bonds company to secure complainant’s release from jail. Sandling did not deposit any of the fees paid for complainant’s representation into a trust or escrow account. Complainant terminated the representation shortly thereafter and requested a refund of unearned fees. Sandling did minimal work to obtain complainant’s release but did not enter a notice of appearance in any of his cases. Sandling failed to return any unearned fees. Sandling violated Rules 1.14(a), 1.14(c), 1.15(d), and 8.04(a)(1). Sandling was ordered to pay $19,500 in restitution and $9,551.94 in attorneys’ fees and expenses. Sandling has filed an appeal.

RESIGNATIONS
On Sept. 30, 2013, the Supreme Court of Texas accepted the resignation, in lieu of discipline, of Alto V. Watson III [#20932800], 53, of Beaumont. While employed at a law firm, Watson wrongfully billed clients separately for his services and personally accepted client funds meant for the law firm and deposited the funds into his personal accounts for his own use and benefit. Additionally, on Aug. 5, 2013, Watson was placed on five years deferred adjudication for the offense of theft. As part of the terms of supervision, Watson was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $29,320 and was also ordered to surrender his law license to the State Bar of Texas. Watson violated Rules 1.14(a), 1.14(b), 8.04(a)(2), and 8.04(a)(3).

SUSPENSIONS
On Aug. 21, 2013, Stuart L. Leeds [#12151500], 58, of El Paso, agreed to a five-month active suspension effective Aug. 1, 2013. The District 17 Grievance Committee found Leeds unreasonably increased the cost and burdens of the case or unreasonably delayed resolution of the matter. Leeds violated Rule 3.02 and was ordered to pay $1,500 in attorneys’ fees and direct expenses.

On Aug. 6, 2013, Allyson A. Egan Rowe [#24030173], 48, of Round Rock, received a two-year partially probated suspension effective Oct. 1, 2013, with six months actively suspended and the remainder probated. An evidentiary panel of the District 8 Grievance Committee found that on Feb. 7, 2012, Rowe was convicted of assault by strangulation/family violence, a third-degree felony, and was sentenced to 10 years in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, said sentence being probated for a period of five years subject to conditions of supervision imposed by the court. In early April 2011, Rowe, knowing that a criminal investigation or official proceeding was pending or in progress on the above-referenced matter, prepared and presented an affidavit for a family member that contained materially false statements concerning evidence of the assault/family violence incident, with the intent to have the family member sign the affidavit and to present it to authorities during the investigation. The family member refused to sign the affidavit. The affidavit prepared by Rowe contained materially false statements concerning evidence of the assault/family violence incident that resulted in Rowe’s conviction as referenced above.  Rowe violated Rules 8.04(a)(2) and 8.04(a)(3). She was ordered to pay $1,199.02 in direct expenses.

On Aug. 23, 2013, Jacques Evan Trevino [#00797571], 45, of Edinburg, received a seven-year partially probated suspension effective Oct. 8, 2013, with the first two years actively served and the remainder probated. The District 12 Grievance Committee found Trevino failed to keep client funds separate from his personal property, failed to promptly deliver funds, failed to ensure a non-lawyer staff member’s conduct was compatible with his professional obligations, and engaged in conduct involving misrepresentation. Notice of appeal received. Trevino violated Rules 1.14(a), 1.14(b), 1.14(c), 5.03(a), 5.03(b), and 8.04(a)(3) and was ordered to pay $91,667 in restitution and $3,477.60 in attorneys’ fees and direct expenses.

On Sept. 13, 2013, Brian Anthony Hamner [#24041050], 37, of San Antonio, accepted an 18-month fully probated suspension effective Sept. 18, 2013. The District 10 Grievance Committee found Hamner neglected a client matter, failed to communicate with a client, and failed to refund the unearned portion of a legal fee.  Hamner violated Rules 1.01(b)(1), 1.03(a), 1.03(b), and 1.15(d) and was ordered to pay $2,050  in restitution and $800 in attorneys’ fees and direct expenses.

On Aug. 21, 2013, Jennifer Lee Parks [#24056095], 32, of Fort Worth, received a five-year probated suspension effective Aug. 14, 2013. An evidentiary panel of the District 7 Grievance Committee found that Parks was hired to represent a client in a bankruptcy matter. Parks neglected the legal matter entrusted to her by failing to file the bankruptcy on her client’s behalf. Further, Parks failed to keep the client reasonably informed about the status of the matter and failed to promptly comply with reasonable requests for information from the client. Upon termination of the representation, Parks failed to refund advance payments of fees that had not been earned. Parks violated Rules 1.01(b)(1), 1.03(a), and 1.15(d). She was ordered to pay $2,650 in restitution, $2,212.50 in attorneys’ fees, and $307.42 direct expenses.

On Sept. 11, 2013, Perry Don Cortese [#00790508], 50, of Little River Academy, received a three-month fully probated suspension effective Sept. 15, 2013. The 169th District Court of Bell County found that Cortese violated Rule 1.14(a) [requiring a lawyer to hold funds and other property belonging in whole or in part to clients or third persons that are in a lawyer’s possession in connection with a representation separate from the lawyer’s own property], Rule 1.15(d) [requiring a lawyer upon termination of representation to take steps to the extent reasonably practicable to protect a client’s interests, such as giving reasonable notice to the client, allowing time for employment of other counsel, surrendering papers and property to which the client is entitled, and refunding any advance payments of fee that has not been earned], and Rule 8.04(a)(1) [prohibiting lawyers from violating the disciplinary rules].  Cortese was ordered to pay $700 in attorneys’ fees and costs.

On Sept. 6, 2013, Rogelio Vargas [#00791848], 46, of San Antonio, accepted a four-year fully probated suspension effective Oct. 31, 2013. The District 10 Grievance Committee found Vargas neglected client matters, failed to keep clients reasonably informed, failed to return unearned fees, and failed to timely respond to grievances. Vargas violated Rules 1.01(b)(1), 1.03(a), 1.03(b), 1.15(d), and 8.04(a)(8) and was ordered to pay $14,300 in restitution and $800 in attorneys’ fees and direct expenses.

On Aug. 19, 2013, Stephen Mark Naslund [#14812600], 56, of Amarillo, received an 18-month active suspension effective Aug. 9, 2013. An evidentiary panel of the District 13 Grievance Committee found that Naslund failed to pay attorneys’ fees and costs as required under a Dec. 20, 2010, default judgment of partially probated suspension. Additionally, Naslund failed to complete five additional hours of continuing legal education in the area of ethics as required under the judgment. Finally, Naslund failed to furnish to the Chief Disciplinary Counsel’s office a response or other information as required by the Texas Rules of Disciplinary Procedure, or assert any grounds for his failure to do so. Naslund violated Rules 8.04(a)(7) and 8.04(a)(8). He was ordered to pay $1,000 in attorneys’ fees and $707.37 in direct expenses.

PUBLIC REPRIMANDS
On Aug. 30, 2013, Joy M. Thomas [#00798004], 48, of Fort Worth, accepted an agreed judgment of public reprimand. An evidentiary panel of the District 7 Grievance Committee found that on Feb. 1, 2008, Thomas was hired by complainant to represent her father in a personal injury matter. In representing complainant’s father, Thomas neglected the legal matter entrusted to her by failing to completely and timely answer discovery, causing the case to be dismissed. In representing complainant’s father, Thomas frequently failed to carry out completely the obligations Thomas owed to complainant’s father. Thomas failed to keep complainant and her father reasonably informed about the status of the personal injury matter. Thomas failed to promptly comply with reasonable requests for information from complainant and her father about the personal injury matter. Thomas failed to explain the personal injury matter to the extent reasonably necessary to permit complainant and her father to make informed decisions regarding the representation. Thomas violated Rules 1.01(b)(1), 1.01(b)(2), 1.03(a), and 1.03(b). She was ordered to pay $1,373.91 in attorneys’ fees and direct expenses.

On Sept. 11, 2013, Glen M. Crocker [#24001445], 43, of Beaumont, accepted an agreed judgment of public reprimand. An evidentiary panel of the District 3 Grievance Committee found that Crocker neglected his client’s case and failed to keep his client reasonably informed about the status of the case. Upon termination of the representation, Crocker failed to refund any of the unearned fees. Crocker violated Rules 1.01(b)(1), 1.03(a), and 1.15(d). Crocker was ordered to pay $1,500 in restitution and $1,125.26 in attorneys’ fees and direct expenses.

On Sept. 11, 2013, Mark Anthony Davis [#24012509], 42, of Victoria, accepted a public reprimand. The District 11 Grievance Committee found Davis failed to refund unearned fees and failed to respond to the grievance. Davis violated Rules 1.15(d) and 8.04(a)(8).

On Sept. 6, 2013, Rene O. Oliveira [#15254700], 58, of Brownsville, accepted a public reprimand. An evidentiary panel of the District 12 Grievance Committee found Oliveira engaged in an ex parte communication with a judge without notice to and outside the presence of counsel for the opposing party. Oliveira violated Rule 3.05(b) and agreed to pay $1,500 in attorneys’ fees and direct expenses.

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November lawyer discipline – 2 from Houston, 14 other Texans

Judicial panel should have more options

October 19, 2013

SAN ANTONIO — Judicial misconduct is a serious matter.

The commission that investigates allegations of misconduct against Texas judges deserves greater leeway in the types of disciplinary actions it can take after making findings. Proposition 9 would grant expanded options.

Complaints about Texas judges are reviewed by the State Commission on Judicial Conduct, which was created in 1965 to handle judicial discipline. About 1,200 complaints are filed each year against Texas judges at all levels of the judicial system. About 6 percent result in disciplinary action.

After investigating a complaint, the judicial commission has the option of taking action or ordering a formal hearing on the more serious cases if warranted. A flaw in the way the commission was established provides a wide range of sanctions in cases heard behind closed doors, but the panel is severely limited on the type of actions involving formal public hearings.

The Texas Constitution limits action taken as a result of a public hearing to a public censure or recommendation of removal or retirement. The options for nonpublic hearings include private or public admonitions, warnings, reprimands or orders to obtain additional training or education.

Limiting the range of sanctions at the disposal of the 13-member judicial conduct commission is a disservice to the process. In 2010, the restrictive nature of the sanctions available permitted Court of Criminal Appeals Presiding Judge Sharon Keller to beat the disciplinary action taken against her using this technicality.

Keller was given a public warning for blocking a death-row inmate’s last minute appeal on the day of his execution. The commission found Keller failed to properly perform her duties when she closed the appeal court clerk’s office at 5 p.m. after she was advised by the defendant’s lawyers that they were having computer problems and wanted to file an after-hours appeal.

The appellate judge successfully challenged the public warning the judicial commission issued because it was not one of the sanctions allowed by the state Constitution in cases such as hers. Despite the troubling conduct, which cast the entire Texas judicial system in an unfavorable light nationally, Keller was able to avoid any official censure.

The public’s confidence in the judiciary would have been boosted if the commission had taken one of the harsher sanction options open to them — which were to remove her from office or force her into retirement — but that is hindsight.

Texas voters can improve the system so history is not allowed to repeat itself by giving members of State Commission on Judicial Conduct a full range of options on sanctions they can take after judicial investigations.

Proposition 9 provides some much-needed fine-tuning of the rules under which the Commission on Judicial Conduct operates.

Full Article and Source:
Judicial panel should have more options

Recommended Website: A Breach of Trust: WWII Veteran and Wife

October 16, 2013

Humana Inc., one of the nation’s largest managed-care companies, was accused in a Federal lawsuit yesterday of misleading health plan members by failing to disclose financial incentives to doctors and case reviewers intended to keep down costs by limiting or denying care.

The suit, filed on behalf of workers in Florida and Texas, asked a United States District Court in Miami to certify a class action on behalf of more than six million customers of Humana health plans nationwide. The suit seeks triple damages under the Federal anti-racketeering law. No amounts were specified.

The plaintiffs say they did not get the health coverage that they thought they were selecting because the company did not disclose incentives to doctors to deny care.

Joseph Sellers, a Washington lawyer who represents the plaintiffs in Miami, said the suit did not question whether managed care was a good idea or whether cost should be a factor. Instead, the suit contends that there was a ”breach of trust” because plan members thought that medical guidelines would solely determine their treatment.

Source:
Humana Sued in Federal Court Over Incentives for Doctors

The Source: Former Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson | Reforming How Texas Chooses Judges

October 12, 2013

“The question is not how is the judiciary? We must ask instead whether our system of justice is working for the people it has promised to serve. Do we have liberty and justice for all? Or have we come to accept liberty and justice only for some?” – Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson’s State of the Judiciary, March 2013.

Last week the state’s highest jurist stepped down. Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson left public service to re-enter private practice after 12 years on the Texas Supreme Court, where his voice was credited with moderating what has been seen as a pro-business bench.

He has won numerous awards, had a school named after him in Northside ISD and was both the first African American on the Texas Supreme Court as well as its first African American Chief Justice.

Jefferson joins us to talk about his story and the issues of justice he sees facing Texas as he leaves public life.

Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson joined the law firm of Alexander, Dubose, Jefferson & Townsend

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The Source: Former Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson | Reforming How Texas Chooses Judges

Judge Ken Anderson Resigns Amid Ethics Lawsuit

October 8, 2013

Williamson County state district Judge Ken Anderson, who oversaw the wrongful murder conviction of Michael Morton in 1987, submitted a letter to Gov. Rick Perry on Monday resigning his position effective immediately.

Anderson is facing both civil and criminal court proceedings for his role in prosecuting Morton for the 1986 murder of his wife, Christine Morton. Attorneys for Morton allege that Anderson withheld critical evidence that pointed to Morton’s innocence and that he lied to the judge about the existence of that evidence. Morton was sentenced to life in prison and spent nearly 25 years behind bars before DNA testing revealed that he was innocent and connected another man to his wife’s killing. He was released from prison in 2011.

In a statement, Anderson made no reference to the Morton case and thanked his supporters. For the “foreseeable future” he said he would be focused on “making the transition into private life.”

“There comes a time when every public official must decide that it is time to leave public life,” Anderson said in the statement released by his lawyer, Eric Nichols. “For me and my family, that time is now.”

Morton’s lawyers, John Raley of the Houston law firm Raley & Bowick, and Barry Scheck of the New York-based Innocence Project, said Anderson’s resignation was “long overdue.”

“We look forward to an adjudication of the pending disciplinary action brought by the state bar as well as the pending criminal charges,” they said in an emailed statement. “Judge Anderson deserves a fair trial, but if there are findings against him in either proceeding, we would expect that appropriate penalties be imposed.”

Anderson was appointed to the bench by Gov. Rick Perry in 2002 and the State Bar of Texas named him “Prosecutor of the Year” in 1995. Perry responded to Anderson on Monday with a letter accepting the resignation and thanking the longtime prosecutor and judge for his service.

The State Bar filed a disciplinary case against Anderson last year, and the trial is scheduled to begin on Monday in Williamson County. Anderson could be disbarred if he is found to have violated professional rules of conduct in securing Morton’s wrongful conviction.

Anderson is also facing criminal charges after Tarrant County state district Judge Louis Sturns, following a court of inquiry in February, charged the former prosecutor with tampering with government records (a misdemeanor), tampering with physical evidence (a felony) and failing to comply with a judge’s order to turn over such evidence, for which he could be held in “contempt of court.”

Full Article and Source:
Judge Ken Anderson Resigns Amid Ethics Lawsuit

Anderson’s civil trial postponed

September 29, 2013

Former Williamson County District Court Judge Ken Anderson’s resignation is reportedly part of a mediation process that could, upon completion, allow him to keep his judicial pension – but could also require him to surrender his law license and possibly spend time in county jail.

A scheduled Sept. 30 civil trial, pitting Anderson and his attorneys against the State Bar of Texas’ Commission for Lawyer Discipline, has been put on hold because of those negotiations.

Although the investigation has been ongoing for almost two years, concerning Anderson’s role in Michael Morton’s 1987 murder conviction, events sped up rapidly this week.

• In a letter with Monday’s date on it, Anderson submitted a resignation letter to Gov. Rick Perry.
• On Tuesday, Perry accepted Anderson’s resignation as judge of the 277th District Court.

• On Wednesday, Kelly Moore – the judge specially appointed to hear the civil trial – notified local officials of the postponement. The civil trial had been set to start Sept. 30 in the county’s 26th District Court.

Now, Moore is calling for both sides to meet again in court Nov. 8. That purpose of that hearing is for Moore to receive an update on the status of the mediation.

Anderson served as Williamson County’s district attorney in 1987, prosecuting Morton on a murder charge stemming from the 1986 murder of Morton’s wife, Christine. Morton was convicted and sentenced to life in prison, but was freed in 2011 on the basis of DNA evidence.

Anderson’s lawyers – and representatives from the State Bar of Texas – are neither confirming nor denying what are supposedly the mediation’s details. They will also not discuss how long ago the two sides entered negotiations.

“I cannot comment,” one of Anderson’s lawyers – Mark Dietz of Round Rock – said in a Thursday email.

A State Bar spokesperson did, however, confirm negotiations are taking place.

“The Commission [for Lawyer Discipline] continues to work toward a final resolution in this matter that will protect the interests of the public and the Bar is confident that such a resolution will be reached,” Claire Mock responded in an email. “As matters pending before the Commission for Lawyer Discipline are confidential and in light of the obligations regarding avoiding unnecessary trial publicity in our own rules of disciplinary conduct, the Commission for Lawyer Discipline will have no further public comment on this matter until it is resolved.”

Following a five-day court of inquiry held in February, in April visiting Judge Louis Sturns ruled there is probable cause to believe Anderson withheld evidence from Morton and his lawyers during that 1987 murder trial.

Full Article and Source:
Anderson’s civil trial postponed

Texas Police Repeatedly Shot and Tasered a 67-Year-Old Alzheimer’s Patient – In Her Own Home

September 28, 2013


September 26, 2013  |

SHERMAN, Texas (CN) – As her husband begged them to “put the gun away,” Texas police repeatedly shot and Tasered a demented 67-year-old woman because she wouldn’t drop a letter opener, then told the husband they had “saved his ass,” the man claims.
 
David Seyfried sued the City of Lewisville Police Department and six of its officers in Federal Court, for his wife Dolores Seyfried.
 
Seyfried says he called the Dallas Alzheimer’s Association hotline after “Dolores had become agitated with (him) and had a four [to] five-inch letter opener in her hand” at their home in Lewisville, a Dallas suburb.
 
The Dallas Alzheimer’s Association then contacted Lewisville police without his consent, Seyfried claims.
 
Defendant Lewisville Officers George Reed and Sgt. Courtney Letalien arrived as David tried to calm Delores down in their back yard, the husband says.
 
“Letalien immediately attempted to remove David from the back yard while holding an orange shotgun in his hand,” the complaint states. “David became very upset once he saw the shotgun and believed at that time that there was no need for such measures. David repeatedly pleaded with Letalien to ‘put the gun away’ and explained that he can calm her down and that no force would be needed.

Full Article and Source:
Texas Police Repeatedly Shot and Tasered a 67-Year-Old Alzheimer’s Patient – In Her Own Home

Ex-District Judge Sentenced to 6 Years in Prison

September 22, 2013

BROWNSVILLE – A judge sentenced former district judge Abel Limas to six years in prison for one count of racketeering. Limas was also ordered to forfeit $257,000 in property he owns and pay more than $6 million in restitution.

Limas was the focus of a corruption case at the Cameron County courthouse. He pleaded guilty more than two years ago and has testified in four trials related to the case.

The ex-judge confessed to accepting bribes for favorable court rulings. He also admitted to taking more than $250,000 from four attorneys.

In court today, his defense attorney said Limas was rehabilitated and did everything asked of him. Limas apologized for embarrassing the judiciary system and his family.

He left the courthouse without any comment about his sentence.

Former Cameron County district attorney Yolando De Leon called the outcome “a good recognition of the damage done to many, many people, many institutions.”

But Limas’ attorney Chip Lews said, “I think it’s exorbitant. Given all the assistance Abel Limas gave the federal government, one would expect a lighter sentence.”

The former judge will report to federal prison in a couple of months. Until then, he is a free man.

Full Article and Source:
Ex-District Judge Sentenced to 6 Years in Prison