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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Disciplinary Hearing Against Bronx Surrogate Concludes

Disciplinary Hearing Against Bronx Surrogate Concludes
The New York Law Journal by Brendan Pierson  -  January 18, 2012

The disciplinary hearing against Bronx Surrogate Lee L. Holzman concluded on Jan. 17, more than one year after the Commission on Judicial Conduct first accused the surrogate of allowing Michael Lippman, former chief counsel to the Bronx public administrator, to collect more than $300,000 in excessive legal fees from estates. Former Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Felice K. Shea presided over the hearing, which concluded with commission attorney Brenda Correa cross-examining Surrogate Holzman for nearly two full days. Throughout the cross-examination, the surrogate repeatedly said that he had been inclined to trust affidavits of legal services submitted by Mr. Lippman, who had worked for the public administrator's office for over 30 years. He testified that, even after Mr. Lippman confessed in 2006 that he had taken excess fees from some estates, he did not believe the attorney had broken any laws and trusted that he would pay them back. He said his first inkling that Mr. Lippman may have been guilty of serious misconduct came in 2009, when state and federal authorities began investigating him. Although Surrogate Holzman removed Mr. Lippman from his position as chief counsel in 2006, he allowed him to continue working for the public administrator and to collect fees in order to refund the estates to which he owed money. The commission is charging the surrogate should have turned Mr. Lippman in to criminal authorities right away. The commission also alleges that the surrogate routinely approved legal fees for Mr. Lippman based on boilerplate language, and that he should have known about the excessive fees earlier. Both sides will now submit written closing briefs. Surrogate Holzman is represented by David Godosky of Godosky & Gentile. Ms. Shea will issue a report to the commission. The agency's administrator and Surrogate Holzman will then submit briefs to the commission, which will hear oral argument before rendering a final determination.


Anonymous said...

It will be interesting to see what the determination is... what a total sham... the really guilty judges go free, and the judge's near retirement take a fall so Tembeckjian can boast his numbers. TOTAL FRAUD.

Anonymous said...

Lee Holzman was set-up and this was the way to get him out. Tembeckjian got the word and is only too happy to help out his political masters. We'll see who want/gets this slot and things will be clearer. Meanwhile, the buzz is that Lee Holzman, a mentsh did well.

Anonymous said...

Casablanca in the NY Surrogate court. Rick, Judge Holzman, didn't know any thieving was going on until the criminal investigators appeared. We can be assured all her other surrogate cases were also so diligently scrutinized. She was the naive surrogate judge with a good heart, not corrupt like the other NY surrogate judges.

Anonymous said...

This is priceless.

Cuomo has all but put the shovel in the ground for gambling in NY. And he has decided the way to make sure it is not corrupt (cough) is to set-up a regulatory commission to oversee it.

He doesn't even have to go that far because he has enough corrupt regulatory commissions in the state to handle that job. But maybe he and all the other politicians have more people they need to take care of.

Dulantha said...

These corrupted court systems do not want to protect the society. Corrupted legal administrators are not actual contributors of creating the society. But they want to control the whole population.

Anonymous said...

Right On to Dulantha - AMEN - you got it right! I will add that the alleged regulatory entities tasked with oversight couldn't find a prostitute in a house of prostitution! And they don't try too hard either.

Anonymous said...

The entire NewYork legal system has to be flushed.The whole thing is contminated.

Anonymous said...


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See Video of Senator John L. Sampson's 1st Hearing on Court 'Ethics' Corruption

The first hearing, held in Albany on June 8, 2009 hearing is on two videos:

               Video of 1st Hearing on Court 'Ethics' Corruption
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