Friday, December 29, 2017

Crime Of The Heart Gets Former Prosecutor Disbarred

The New York Appellate Division for the Second Judicial Department found that an attorney's felony conviction resulted in her automatic disbarment

The Grievance Committee contends that the respondent’s conviction of the federal felony of illegal interception of communications under 18 USC §§ 2511(1)(a) and (4)(a) is essentially similar to the New York class E felony of eavesdropping (Penal Law § 250.05). Pursuant to Penal Law § 250.05, “[a] person is guilty of eavesdropping when he [or she] unlawfully engages in wiretapping, mechanical overhearing of a conversation, or intercepting or accessing of an electronic communication.” During the respondent’s plea allocution, she admitted that she was guilty of both counts of an indictment filed March 23, 2017, in that, between approximately 2015 and 2016, while working as an Assistant District Attorney for the Office of the Kings County District Attorney, she, inter alia, misappropriated that office’s equipment and facilities in order to illegally intercept and record the oral and electronic communications transmitted to and from two cellular telephones, and that she did illegally intercept, eavesdrop on, and record such communications.

We conclude that the respondent’s conviction of illegal interception of communications, in violation of 18 USC §§ 2511(1)(a) and (4)(a), constitutes a felony within the meaning of Judiciary Law § 90(4)(e). As such, upon her conviction of that crime, the respondent was automatically disbarred and ceased to be an attorney pursuant to Judiciary Law § 90(4)(a).

The New York Daily News reported the crimes

An ex-Brooklyn prosecutor in an ill-fated love triangle broke down as she admitted Monday to snooping on another prosecutor and a married detective with bogus wiretap orders.

"I knew my conduct was illegal," Tara Lenich said Monday in Brooklyn federal court, her voice going shaky while she fessed up to the forged judicial documents. "I'd just like to apologize and say I'm so sorry for my actions and for everyone that they affected."

That's when Lenich, 41, began to cry.

She needed a moment before she could continue with her guilty plea to the charges that derailed her high-flying position as deputy chief of the Brooklyn District Attorney's Violent Criminal Enterprises Bureau.

The case was done even before it started.

Just last Monday, Brooklyn federal prosecutors charged Lenich with two counts of illegal interception of communications. Those were the same charges she copped to a week later.

Lenich turned the clout and reach of her office and the state court system into her gossipy go-between — allegedly to keep up on what was up with Detective Jarrett Lemieux and Brooklyn Assistant District Attorney Stephanie Rosenfeld.

         For nearly 16 months, Lenich cut judges' signatures from real documents and put them on fabricated wiretap orders that would let monitor the pair's cellphones.
 
(Mike Frisch)

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/legal_profession/2017/12/the-new-york-appellate-division-for-the-second-judicial-department-the-grievance-committee-contends-that-the-respondents.html

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