Tuesday, May 20, 2008

A STRANGER IN A STRANGE LAND

UPDATED BELOW!

And Moses was content to dwell with the man : and he gave Moses Zipporah his daughter.And she bare him a son, and he called his name Gershom: for he said, "I have been a stranger in a strange land."
-- Exodus 2: 21-22



We recently received an email from a prominent federal defense attorney who noted his/her travails on a recent Monday morning outing to our humble building.

There was no place to park and after a half an hour of circling they parked in the median on a grass strip several blocks away.

They got to the courtroom only to be told the prosecutor they had a meeting with had decided not to show up for work that day.

A quick trip to the restroom (a clear rookie mistake) produced a few untimely steps in human liquid waste that was on the floor.

And finally, beaten down by the heat, the lines, the smelly and dirty bathrooms not to mention the ridiculous belief that the prosecutor who agreed to meet them in court had any intention of actually showing up, they trudged back to their car, tie askew, bathed in sweat, actually longing for Judge Dimeitrouleas’s rocket docket, or for a quick arraignment and trial before Judge Huck, or a nice friendly sentencing before Judge Zlock.

Query: The door swings both ways on this. State practitioners will occasionally latch onto a federal matter and walk out of court bewildered by the lack of discovery and astounded by pre-sentence reports (ghost written by federal prosecutors, for federal prosecutors, thus ensuring that federal prosecutors will not perish from this earth-or something like that) and confused by a maze of rules and statute numbers (“discovery shall not be provided until the appellate decision is final”), not to mention appellate decisions written by Bush appointees, all designed to ensure that the defendant has a speedy and fair trial, followed by a sentencing usually within a week of arrest.

Have we reached a time of specialization when practitioners of criminal law are better off staying in their own respective ponds?

See you in court, where after all this time in the REGJB, if you haven't latched on to a sympathetic judge who will let you use their bathroom, or figured out the "jury room bathroom trick", then all the knowledge in the world of case law will not save you from yourself.


UPDATE:
How many people does it take to get a man out of a tree?
The Herald has the answer
HERE

The real question is how many civil lawyers will it take to sort out the mess now?

25 comments:

Anonymous said...

at least they didnt have a ticket on their car....

Anonymous said...

He got lucky that his car wasn't ticketed and/or towed.

Anonymous said...

Many have had both good and bad days in federal and state court, and there's always been a resentment between "state" and "federal" defense lawyers. Each wish, but mainly on the federal side, that the "other" lawyers would stay out of "their" court.

That being said, the real problem is for people like that "prominent federal lawyer," who are not in state court all the time or vice versa. There has always been a perception in state court that everyone is "there anyway," so if a prosecutor doesn't show up, big deal, he'll show up later, or tomorrow. In juvenile its 10 times worse. In federal the issue is FDC. Those that have one client to see, are affected more by the fact that their client wasn't brought down than the lawyer with 5 clients.

It's a lot easier to practice in state and federal court if you have volume in either of them. That way you can deal with the BS that will never stop.

Anonymous said...

Ivan Hernandez (the former judge for those who already forgot him) is teaching a seminar "How not to loose your seat or is it how not to get disrobed" oh whatever!

Anonymous said...

I prefer state court.

FAMOUS CHRISTY'S MEMORIAL DAY INCIDENT REMEMBERED said...

Rump, Memorial Day fast approaches and beyond the fun and frivolity, your longtime and careful readers (as you like to say) will once again remember the MEMORIAL DAY INCIDENT AT CHRISTYS.

As we approach the year 2010, when the late Judge Solmon's order to seal the case will expire, Miami can once again delve into the wild late 1980's when a Cigar (lit or unlit?) some airborne mashed potatoes, some wine (spilled or thrown or both?) created mayhem that was the "Night Miami Would Never Forget." All of Miami's "high-society" claimed to have been there; claimed to have had a suit or dress stained with wine or mashed potatoes; and the resulting civil suits created a mess beyond all comprehension, leading mild mannered Judge Solomon to lose his temper more than once and eventually "seal the case to protect the reputations of the innocent." To have been involved in the mayhem was a badge of honor among the high flying Miami party set back then.

He was silent last year when we discussed this topic on the blog, but now the question must be asked again: When will Shumie talk?????

RFB said...

I was there. I have the court pleadings to prove it.

Anonymous said...

Rumpolian, aka Vegas football bettor,

Any truth to the rumor that your favourite banned blogger has received a verdict? We figured you'd be the source for breaking blog news. Are you going to force us to keep surfing the other sites you recommend?Or are you drinking too many shots and have your nose in the pro football stats?

Is it true? Get your nose off the yacht & out of the brandy snifer & do your job!

Anonymous said...

Rump, Who cares what a lawyer who usually or mostly practices in Federal Court thinks? Why do you or does anyone think becasue you practice there, you are a superior lawyer? I bet they lose more there than in state court and then justify it by saying "boo hoo we don't get any discovery". They rationalize their superiority becasue they fight unarmed. Well, they still lose ALL THE TIME! It's just some big ego thing for a bunch of phonies!

Rumpole said...

When we ban someone from the blog, we ban them. meaning we don't just report and take pleasure in their misfortune (although one reason we banned them was their obvious delight in the misfortune of others). So if someone has been banned and later something unfortunate happens, like a referee recommending a suspension or disbarment, we just ignore it, because we have already turned our back on them.

Anonymous said...

Rump, did you actually say to Jack "now I gotta turn my back on you"

Pauly'd be proud

Old Civil Guy said...

Rump, your readers are making a mashed potato mountain out of a mole hill. I was one of the lawyers representing about 20 plaintiffs in the civil case. Without getting into specifics, they basically got a free dry cleaning of their clothes, whether they needed it or not, plus a meal-and the unspoken belief was that the restaurant preferred that the patrons who sued not return for a while. So this being the late 1980's, most people chose the Forge and Christy's picked up the tab up to $100.00 per person if I remember correctly. The lawyers all got some small fees (about $1,500 per plaintitff) and a meal as well, and it was really the cache of just being involved in the lawsuit and the publicity that drove many of Miami's biggest names in civil law to take a case or two. Those were the days. I'm retired now in North Carolina, but I found your blog and like to read it. Keep up the ggod work.

Anonymous said...

To 10:13. You are right on the money. The so called "white collar bar" is a nothing but a collection of overrated, egotistical, backslapping, and over credentialed lawyers who think they are part of an exclusive "club" and better than everyone else. The fact that they lose cases means nothing to them. What they truly treasure above all else is being held in high esteem by federal judges and their like minded colleagues. They would much rather be recognized in some tony restaurant by a federal judge and or some celebrity than get some poor shlub out of jail. There is a name for this: snobbery. And it has its roots in another little talked about facet of being a federal phoney: insecurity. Let's face it. Most of these people cut their teeth as federal prosecutors which during the past twenty five years is akin to shooting fish in a barrel. They go out and get clients not on their trial skills or street smarts but their credentials. This builds on itself but the reality is that when the rubber meets the road, they are no different from anyone else. So what becomes important to them is status. Compare it to some paper pushing general who works his way up the ass kissing ladder in Washington but when he is actually put on the battlefield and hears the sound of gunfire, craps his pants and cries for his mommy. This scenario is not applicable to all lawyers over there (Sharpstein is a notable exception) but it does to most.

Anonymous said...

Former federal prosecutors who become white collar defense attorneys offer their clients their ability to cut good plea deals with their former colleagues.

Anonymous said...

Did JT shut down GamePolitics.com? I figured they'd have the scoop on him but your link isn't working and their site's not up....

Anonymous said...

Rumpole:

Let's talk about the state of this race.

I've won more votes than anyone running for the Democratic nomination in the history of our party. I've won states that will total 308 electoral votes in November -- more than enough to carry the general election. And it is critical that we make certain the more than 2 million voters in Florida and Michigan are heard.

We can let the media decide this race. We can let the pundits be the ones who determine our party's nominee. Or we can listen to the voters. Yesterday, voters in Kentucky joined you in sending a clear message -- this campaign is far from over.

Throughout it all, through the ups and downs of this race, you've been there, supporting me every step of the way.

Hilary

Anonymous said...

Dear Rump:
Though you may have turned your back on everything Jack Thompson, Tunis' decision is newsworthy and you should report it. By the way, Game Politics is reporting that tunis is recommending that he be found guilty on numerous charges.

Bye, Bye, Bye... said...

Bye, Bye, Bye...

ORLANDO, Fla. - Lou Pearlman, the man who created the Backstreet Boys and 'N Sync, was sentenced Wednesday to 25 years in federal prison for engineering a decades-long scam that bilked thousands of investors out of their life savings.

It was the maximum sentence the boy band mogul could receive for allegedly swindling some $300 million from investors and banks since the early 1980s.

He pleaded guilty in March to two counts of conspiracy and single counts of money laundering and presenting a false claim in bankruptcy court.

U.S. District Judge G. Kendall Sharp noted that many victims were Pearlman's relatives, friends and retirees in their 70s or 80s who lost everything.

"The sympathy factor just doesn't run very high with the court," Sharp said.

However, the judge said he would reduce Pearlman's sentence by one month for every $1 million returned to investors. It wasn't clear how, or if, investors would ever be compensated.

"I want to say clearly that there's no pot of gold out there," defense attorney Fletcher Peacock said.

Prosecutors allege Pearlman scammed individuals out of an estimated $200 million, and banks out of another $100 million.

The courtroom was packed with victims, some of whom gave emotional testimony. Another two dozen or so waited outside.

"Over the past nine months since my arrest, I've come to realize the harm that's been done," Pearlman said in a short courtroom statement. "I'm truly sorry and I apologize for what's happened."

Peacock said Pearlman meant to pay back all the investors, and noted he had returned about $103 million.

He said Pearlman got caught up in lawsuits - also alleged fraudulent business practices - over his otherwise successful entertainment ventures in the 1990s that prevented him from returning the money.

Rumpole why does this Miami resident not get the same treatment?

http://www.siegelforensic.com/fraudreports/feb2008worldwideentertainment.htm

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Anonymous said...

Rump,

You are respected. But it's almost like if we stick only with you we miss the real news. We understand you have loft principles. That's part of the admiration surrounding you. BUT......................you are forcing us to go to the Browsed blog, the Daily Business Review.com , GamePolitics.com. and other spots for real new news beyond refurbished elevators.

We are concerned. Did you lose badly in a pre-season pick? Did you lose in the Preakness? Did you not get a seat at the sold-out FACDL shindig ( a record breaking over 400 this year). Did your secret favorite female judge fail to show; or was she there looked hot, and you can't figure out how to weave it into posts in a Tennsionian literary way? (sorry for typos) you get the drift, right? Don't make me invoke some babe like Jane Austin. That wouldn't go with a list of hit judges, unless you are really Mr. Darcy.

Thus, where is our Rump? More than one person changing personalities, or just Sybil, hoping not to get found out? We care, either way.

Anonymous said...

Talk about the dangers of state court - the big story from yesterday is that a PD got attacked in Judge Mary Jo Francis's courtroom. I heard about it in the rumor mill today and happen to know the PD. Haven't spoken to her, but she is very well liked and well respected and I hope she's ok.

Anonymous said...

Mike Braxton is sexy. Have you seen him try an APC case? Grr...

Anonymous said...

Keep dreaming. Good Plea deals because you were once a prosecutor. As if the USAO cares what you were before you were swept to the dark side. Guidelines, guilty pleas, flip, 3553, welcome to Federal Practice. Oh, and every now and then you get to be slaugtered in trial.

Anonymous said...

The most distressing things about practicing in Federal court are that prosecutors routinely employ tactics that state prosecutors would never dream of and the judges let them get away with it. They have little or no evidence? No problem. The judge will let them introduce "evidence" via snitch testimony about all of the other bad things your client has allegedly done in the past. Never mind that the only "evidence" that any of those things ever happened either is the word of their snitch. They figure if they throw enough ugly allegations out there the jury will be sufficiently prejudiced and they will get their conviction.(They are usually right). It is like playing a game where the outcome has been pre-determined. Where is the fun or justice in that?

Anonymous said...

Wait - which PD was attacked? Details, please. This is what the blog is for, right?