May 10, 2011
The Price Of Hope
A Louisiana Hearing Committee has recommended a five-year suspension of a criminal defense attorney. The committee found multiple acts of misconduct, although some charges were not sustained.
As to sanction
The Committee concludes the primary factor in the misconduct of Respondent was extremely poor personal and professional judgment, discipline and practices. As a criminal defense attorney, Respondent is in the position to take great advantage of people in very difficult personal straits (more often than not who are there because of their own poor judgment, discipline and practices), and who are very susceptible for the "hope" that he offers at a very great price. In the opinion of the Committee the primary factor in the pattern of continuing misconduct were character flaws that were continually evidenced in the actions of the Respondent. This finding is buttressed by repeated acts of conversion of funds, the failure to acknowledge responsibility for past actions, and the lengthy failure to make concerted efforts toward repayment of the losses, which cause, and continue to cause, substantial harm to former clients. While to Committee is tempted but not inclined to believe gave a verbal "guarantee" of success, the committee is certainly not convinced his clients were made to understand the long odds against success under the most difficult circumstances...
The committee rejected charges relating to the attorney's riding in a car where alcohol and drugs were being used. (Mike Frisch)
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