Thursday, September 24, 2009

No Reinstatement For Operation Greylord Defendant

The IIlinois Review Board has agreed with a hearing panel and recommended that a petition for reinstatement be denied. The attorney was convicted in Operation Greylord and had served a six-year prison term. He had consented to disbarment. The Review Board quotes the Seventh Circuit as to the nature of the crimes:

[Petitioner], the defendant in this Greylord prosecution, was a crooked lawyer. He made a living bribing crooked judges. Often [he] played the broker's role, matching lawyers who did not know which judges would take money with judges who did not know which lawyers would pay it. For these services, he has been convicted of violating the Hobbs Act, 18 U.S.C. sec. 1951, and the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), 18 U.S.C. secs. 1961-68; he was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Factors that weighed against reinstatement:

After leaving prison, [he] worked for his brother-in-law at Goldsure investments. However, he lost his job there in 2002 and has not worked since. [He] became a certified personal trainer approximately 5 years ago but has not been able to find work in that field. About one year prior to his reinstatement hearing, [he] began volunteering for two hours per week at a retirement home. He also takes care of his elderly mother and his wife, who has multiple sclerosis.

To his credit, [he] has cared for his family and has not engaged in any improper conduct since he surrendered his license. On the other hand, his activities are not on par with those of...other petitioners who have been reinstated. He began volunteer work only after he filed his petition for reinstatement. Because of his unemployment for the past 7 years, he has not recently held a position of trust or responsibility within his community. The Hearing Board indicates, and we agree, that in order to demonstrate that he is rehabilitated, [he] must show that he has offset the harm he caused with good work of some sort, in essence repaying society for his misdeeds. He has not made such a showing here. Other petitioners have accomplished this task so we do not think it is too much to ask of [him], particularly in light of his extremely serious misconduct. Because [his] activities following disbarment do not yet rise to the level of establishing rehabilitation, we agree with the Hearing Board that this factor weighs against [him].

He also was found to have lacked candor and forthrightness in his testimony at the reinstatement hearing. (Mike Frisch)

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