April 18, 2007
Justice Delayed But Not Denied
The New York Appellate Division for the First Judicial Department had accepted the resignation of an attorney several years ago. The resignation was tendered after the attorney had been charged in a bribery case and apparently was granted because the court was unaware of the pending charges. He pled guilty shortly after the resignation was accepted. On motion of disciplinary counsel, the order granting leave to resign was vacated and the attorney's name was struck from the roll of attorneys based on the felony conviction.
It is not unusual as a matter of disciplinary procedure for a court to refuse to accept resignation after disciplinary or criminal charges have been instituted against a lawyer. Here, the court ruled that a resignation that was granted in error can be undone even after the passage of many years. (Mike Frisch)
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