January 24, 2013
DA Walks On Conflicts Charges
The Louisiana Attorney Disciplinary Board has agreed with a hearing committee that a district attorney engaged in no ethical violation in representing a civil client.
The client was injured when she fell out of an inner tube connected to a boat. The boat driver was issued a citation charging misdemeanor criminal violations.
The district attorney recused his office from prosecuting the citations, continued to represent his client in the civil litigation and received a legal fee of $20,000.
The Office of Disciplinary Counsel charged that the district attorney engaged in a concurrent conflict of interest and conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice.
The board here found it significant that the district attorney (who was allowed a civil practice) had accepted the representation before he was aware of the citations (and resulting conflict).
Any ethics scholars out there disagree with the board's conflicts analysis? (Mike Frisch)
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