In case of ‘textbook contempt,’ suspended lawyer who refused to adjust to ethics orders is fined $100 a day
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A Boston-area lawyer has been fined $100 a day and subjected to a lengthier suspension after she was held in contempt for falsely holding herself out as eligible to follow legislation on her web site and voice mail.
“Maybe most vital of all” is that the lawyer, Maude Laroche-St. Fleur, acknowledged in open court docket that she wouldn’t take the steps wanted to adjust to court docket orders in her ethics case, in accordance with an April 11 opinion imposing sanctions.
“This blatant defiance of the clear and unequivocal instructions of the court docket constitutes textbook contempt,” wrote Justice David A. Lowy of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court docket.
Laroche-St. Fleur must proceed paying the $100 every day advantageous till she is not in contempt. Lowy additionally tacked further time onto Laroche-St. Fleur’s preliminary 18-month suspension, making her ineligible to use for reinstatement for 5 years after no matter date she considerably complies with orders within the ethics case. And Lowy stated he would appoint a commissioner to “take applicable motion.”
Laroche-St. Fleur was initially suspended in March 2022 for ignoring court docket orders and submitting false monetary statements in her personal divorce case, in accordance with prior protection of the October 2022 opinion upholding the 2022 suspension by Law.com.
Within the new opinion, Lowy stated there is no such thing as a proof that Laroche-St. Fleur was actively working towards legislation in the course of the 18-month suspension.
However there seems to be no reference to Laroche-St. Fleur’s suspension on her legislation workplace web site, her legislation agency’s voicemail message, her LinkedIn pages and her legislation workplace “contact us” type, Lowy stated.
As well as, Laroche-St. Fleur didn’t adjust to an order for her to provide paperwork displaying the extent to which she complied with the suspension order.
“By persevering with to carry herself out as a working towards lawyer or as entitled to follow legislation whereas she has been suspended,” Lowy stated, Laroche-St. Fleur “has engaged within the unauthorized follow of legislation.”
Laroche-St. Fleur has the best to attraction to the total Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court docket, in accordance with this discipline summary.
Laroche-St. Fleur advised the ABA Journal she has filed a cert petition with the U.S. supreme Court docket however couldn’t remark additional. “I’m politely saying that I can’t say something,” she stated.