Schwartz came out bedecked in a black trimmed, glaring red robe. Was the sartorial splendor simply a nod to the holiday season, or par for the course? No, we were advised, he often dons flowing, colorful accoutrements worthy of a Roman emperor.
Next, he proceeded to rip an Israeli national, represented by counsel. Schwartz felt the defendant was trying to pull a fast one, by claiming he didn't speak English. He ordered the tapes played from a previous hearing, when the defendant had appeared without benefit of counsel, apparently understanding and speaking the English language. MOTION DENIED.
Counsel for the defendant got into it with Schwartz, but the Judge wouldn't budge. There were some choice berations directed at the defendant, worthy of Broward's finest, along the lines of "You may be one of the privileged people, but you don't have the privilege of driving in the United States without a license."
Classic north of the border stuff, except very un-Broward-like in the end, since Schwartz stated on multiple occasions that he would recuse himself if the defendant didn't feel he was getting a fair shake. Just like that. No motions to file, no tricky rules and deadlines to navigate, and no convoluted, hide the ball, highly technical bogus rulings to appeal later. In short, it was fair.
Impressed, we asked around after returning to home turf. It turns out Schwartz was also a super hot shot lawyer before he retired, at least according to Fred Haddad and Howard Finkelstein. As far as the red robe is concerned, however, no one could offer a satisfactory explanation.