WELCOME TO THE OFFICIAL RICHARD E GERSTEIN JUSTICE BUILDING BLOG. THIS BLOG IS DEDICATED TO JUSTICE BUILDING RUMOR, HUMOR, AND A DISCUSSION ABOUT AND BETWEEN THE JUDGES, LAWYERS AND THE DEDICATED SUPPORT STAFF, CLERKS, COURT REPORTERS, AND CORRECTIONAL OFFICERS WHO LABOR IN THE WORLD OF MIAMI'S CRIMINAL JUSTICE. THIS BLOG HAS BEEN CALLED "THE DEFINITIVE BLOG ON MIAMI CRIMINAL LAW" BY THE NY TIMES, THE WASHINGTON POST, THE POPE, AND DONALD TRUMP WHO ALSO ONCE SAID IT WAS "REALLY GREAT". POST YOUR COMMENTS, OR SEND RUMPOLE A PRIVATE EMAIL AT HOWARDROARK21@GMAIL.COM

Thursday, January 07, 2010

WELL SAID

We received this comment. We agree with most of it,
although we also think Jeff Swartz or Samantha
Ruiz Cohen would be a big step up from the
Judge they are running against.

This needed to be said, and was said very well.

Loyal reader said...

This blog is so full of hypocrisy. You guys constantly bitch that jnc applicants are just looking for a raise because they can't make it in the private sector. You bitch that some of the new judges have no trial experience. Here comes Milt Hirsch and Miguel De la O, two guys taking huge pay cuts, successful private careers and loads of trial experience, and you anonymous yahoos begin engaging in petty juvenile name calling. Tear these guys down, and you'll get the judges you deserve. Sure Milt has an ego, but he's earned it and is a good guy. Talk to him and see for yourself. Have you ever spoken to Miguel? Completely down to earth, approachable guy, with no ego. We could do a lot worse (Planas, Adrien, Swartz), and won't find many better.

19 comments:

another loyal reader said...

Well said loyal reader. Thanks to this blob, Rumpole & the Captain keep us up to date on the current state of affairs with all of the elections.

You don't like who has filed to run and think you can do better, then go ahead and file yourself. Or encourage someone to run who you think would make a great judge.

Rumpole said...

If you dont like a judicial candidate- so be it. But to baselessly accuse them of "terrorizing little children"? I can't allow that without proof.

Anonymous said...

We have the best group of people up for appointment right now than I have ever seen. THe JNC did good this time.

Lourdes Simon, Margot Moss, Tammy Gray or Andrea Wolfson would all be great.

Anonymous said...

Wrong, wrong, wrong.

Many of us have dealt with these people and simply put, De La O, Swartz and a few others have no business being judges.

Who cares of they take a pay cut. Any decent lawyer would take a pay cut to be a judge.

The big question is why someone wants to be a judge.

Anonymous said...

VERY valid point (then again, this blog is plagued by do-nothing whiners who anonymously snipe at every lawyer or judge whose name appears in its pages, as we all know).

Here's how I see it.........for whatever it's worth..........(I only list races that are contested and that I have an opinion on).

Circuit:

Group 21 (Judy Kreeger retiring):

Tough call here..........Miguel de la O is a great guy (I litigated against him many moons ago). From what I recall, he's smart, down to earth, and understands people. I don't know that he has significant experience in criminal circuit court (someone else can comment on that). Kopco is Miguel's opposite in many ways. Also bright, Patty is a pure extrovert. She's aggressive, sarcastic and a hell of a lot of fun (think of her as Pooler light). She has substantial felony experience. Both would be solid judges. We can't go wrong here.

Group 41 (Gerald Hubbart retiring)

Milton Hirsch is as smart as they come. He is an outstanding lawyer. While many are fooled by his dry wit into believing that he is an ego maniac, the truth is that he is a great guy who treats others as they deserve. If he wins, don't show up unprepared. He'll skewer you (as I've said before, I have no problems with judges doing that. Disrespect the system, the victims and/or your clients and get what you deserve).

Group 45
Samantha Ruiz Cohen is a no-brainer. She was a terrific prosecutor. She knows the law and is as honest as the day is long. She's got a great demeanor and will do whatever is necessary to do the job properly. My second choice would be Swartz. Decent guy, but doesn't have the Sam's demeanor or work ethic.

County:

Group 11

Are you kidding me? This is an absolute no-brainer. Flora was a terrific prosecutor and has far more experience that most anyone on the bench. She's honest, fair, hardworking and knowledgeable. Frankly, I'd rather see her sitting Circuit handling far more serious cases than the ones she's handling now, but such is fate (and the JNC/Governor). It's a shame that she's drawn an opponent and has to waste her time and money fighting for a seat that she earned and should keep.

BTDT

PS---the Hirsch bashing is ridiculous. Milt's a great guy and will be a terrific judge.

Anonymous said...

this blog favors particular candidates...to say it is neutral is simply not the truth

Anonymous said...

swartz has an ego? you must be kidding me. he is very down to earth and doesnt have an ounce of ego.

Anonymous said...

maybe de la o is rumpole
???? he has an alias and poses as himself at times??

CAPTAIN said...

THE CAPTAIN REPORTS:

Hot off the presses ....

Former Bush Lawyer Charged With Attempted Murder

The Associated Press is reporting today that a onetime top official in both Bush presidencies is accused of trying to kill his wife at their Connecticut home. The lawyer, John Michael Farren, was once considered a rising Republican star in Washington.

Cap Out ...

Anonymous said...

swartz is a pompous boob, and was a bad judge

Anonymous said...

This may be a good time to remind your readers of The Captain's Golden Rule, first set out on 12/10/09:
"... if you have nothing nice to say about someone then keep your mouth shut."

Anonymous said...

Swartz was pompous judge but he knew and followed the law, which is what really matters to our clients and us. Some of our sitting judges can't even read the plain meaning of a statue or a rule and that's very frustrating. Jeff Swartz could and did.

CAPTAIN said...

1:57. You are correct sir. I favor the candidates that filed to run and I included their names in the article I wrote.

You got me.

Captain wannabe said...

Some info courtesy of Google Scholar regarding appellate cases handled by the various candidates:

CIRCUIT COURT

Group 21 (Judy Kreeger retiring)
Miguel de la O: Click here (Mostly civil cases. A handful of criminal cases including a first degree murder case with Neal Sonnet where they walked the guy out of prison on an insufficiency of evidence claim).

Patricia Kopco: Click here (2 divorce cases)

Group 41 (Gerald Hubbart retiring)
Milton Hirsch Click here (over 60 cases and articles. All I saw were criminal cases. Quoted often by others in their articles).

Group 45

Peter Adrien (I) Click here (2 cases)

Samantha Ruiz Cohen Click here (No cases. One article on environmental law from Hostra law review)

Jeffrey Swartz Click here (handful of civil cases)

Group 62 (Paul Siegel retiring)

Robert Kuntz Click here (No cases, although Milt gives him a shout out in one of his law review articles)

Juan-Carlos Planas Click here (No cases unless you count his divorce or his lawsuit against the elections supervisor)

COUNTY COURT
Group 11

Flora Seff (I) Click here (No cases).

Michelle Gonzalez-Paulson – No hits of any kind

Group 31

Lisa Walsh (I) Click here (over 20 criminal cases, occasional civil case. In 2004, challenged "Three-Strike Violent Felony Offender Act" before the Fla SCt, and once convinced the 3d DCA to remand for a new trial b/c trial court failed to exclude a confession.)

Silvia Perez Click here (1 case)

Presented for what it’s worth.

Anonymous said...

The trial tax at its worst:

This defendant and her federal public defenders (one of them Judge Barzee) believed she was innocent and went to trial, where she lost and was sentenced to life after being convicted of first degree murder of a witness in the Magluta/Falcon case for letting the hitmen stay and store weapons at her house and providing a car they used for the getaway. The actual hitmen got 20 years which was reduced to seven years for testifying against her (as usual, big fish getting great deals to testify against the small fish). Willie Falcon himself only got 20 years.

David O. Markus (with a k) filed a motion seeking to vacate her judgment and sentence based on a ineffective assistance of counsel. Her trail lawyers, Judge Barzee and Reuben Camper Cahn, testified in her behalf in the hearing on the motion.

According to todays Miami Herald article, "U.S. District Judge Joan Lenard found in a recent ruling that Ramirez's claim that her lawyers provided ``ineffective assistance of counsel'' rang hollow because they all were aware of the potential for a life sentence before and during trial.

Moreover, Lenard found, they rejected what the judge described as a ``generous'' government plea offer, largely because Ramirez and her lawyers thought she was ``innocent'' and that they could prevail at trial.

``While hindsight always renders decisions much clearer, Ramirez's self-serving statements that she would have taken the plea deal do not convert her `lost' opportunity to plead guilty into constitutional `prejudice,' '' Lenard wrote in her 46-page ruling.

``This is especially the case here, where the record is replete with evidence that her decision to go to trial was based on both'' of her lawyers' belief in her innocence, Lenard found."

David O. Markus is going to appeal this manifest injustice to the 11th Circuit in Atlanta. Clearly, this woman got socked with a life sentence on a minor role for going to trial, while those with the principal roles got 7 years because they pled guilty and testified against her.

The link to the Herald's article:

http://www.miamiherald.com/news/breaking-news/story/1415402.html

Appellate guy said...

FYI- Adrien lost both of his appeals.

New Judicial Candidate... said...

New Judicial Candidate...

Anonymous said...

9:10 No manifest injustice there for that defendant. The only injustice is that the hit men got off so light. Perhaps if Barzee and company weren't so damn cocky their client would've flipped, gotten a great deal and the hit men would've gotten the life sentence they deserved. Stupidity does not equate to ineffectiveness or injustice.

Anonymous said...

Bob Levy please stay off of this blog.