Monday, June 24, 2019

Not Just Visiting

The Louisiana Disciplinary Board proposes permanent disbarment of a convicted attorney.

On or about March 14, 2016, Misael "Mike" Jimenez, Jr., the attorney for the Lafourche Parish Sheriff, reported to the Office of Disciplinary Counsel (pursuant to his obligation under Rule 8.3(a)) an incident which occurred on March 4, 2016 in which the Respondent attempted to introduce contraband into the Lafourche Parish Detention Center in violation of R.S. 14:402. On the evening of March 4, 2016 at approximately 9:15 in the evening, the Respondent arrived at the Lafourche Parish Detention Center identifying himself as an attorney and seeking to visit an inmate who he identified as a client. Respondent attempted to enter into the facility with a briefcase and objected to his briefcase being searched. When asked for identification, the Respondent produced a suspended driver's license (expired since 2010) and an older, damaged Louisiana Bar Association Identification Card. When jail staff opened his briefcase, the Respondent reportedly became nervous and objected to them looking through his briefcase asserting "attorney-client privilege." After explaining that they merely intended to examine the contents for contraband, Respondent opened his briefcase and attempted to obscure their view of the contents which included several plastic heatsealed bags. The bags contained four cellular flip phones, chargers, and tobacco. Each of these items is strictly forbidden as contraband. After being advised that such contraband was prohibited, the Respondent nervously left the detention center. Upon further investigation, law enforcement determined that in a telephone call recorded by the prison system, the Respondent had prearranged his effort to smuggle in contraband to an inmate within the facility. An arrest warrant was sought and obtained for his violation of R.S. 14:402-attempting to introduce contraband into a penal institution which [is] a felony.

After receiving the above described information, the Office of Disciplinary Counsel also received a complaint from presiding District Court Judge Walter Lanier III, which was received by the Office of Disciplinary Counsel on March 17, 2016. Judge Lanier advised the Office of Disciplinary Counsel that the Respondent had been charged with felony drug charges and possession of stolen items in addition to the previously reported attempt to bring contraband into a penal facility. The subsequent charges arose when law enforcement, armed with an arrest warrant, went to the home of the Respondent to carry out his arrest. After noting the presence of drugs in plain view, law enforcement sought and obtained a search warrant for his residence which was granted by the presiding judge. Law enforcement located saboxone, marijuana, possession of a .50 caliber weapon with a controlled dangerous substance, weapons with an obliterated serial number, and a stolen outboard motor.

He entered treatment after the arrest and had been suspended since 2016. (Mike Frisch)

https://lawprofessors.typepad.com/legal_profession/2019/06/not-just-visiting-.html

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