More bad lawyers

I find it hard to believe Mr. Clarke did not know his actions were a clear violation.  Then to not bother  looking it up, or contacting the Bar to find out?  He seems to have gotten off easy.

The violations stem from Clark’s financial relationship with an elderly widow who suffered from multiple sclerosis when they first met. She later developed Alzheimer’s disease and a personality disorder, among various physical ailments.

According to Mead, the widow, Eugenie B. Landry, owned a “small but valuable oceanfront residence,” which, upon her death in 2005, was sold.

The estate, which Clark controlled — and under which he was named the beneficiary — received the net proceeds of $524,000 from the sale.

“Clark ultimately took $325,000 from the estate,” Mead wrote in his opinion, adding, “He used the money to cover his children’s tuition costs and to pay off his mortgage.”


Gifted Harvard properties sold

Two properties that were donated to Harvard apparently for use by faculty members, have been sold. Because they were donated for the specific purposes, the University needed approval from the Maine attorney general before they could be sold. Without seeing the actual deeds, it is impossible to say if the sales were in line with the donor’s intent. But apparently the proceeds of the sales are to be used for purposes benefiting faculty.

In the case involving the Kendall estate in Maine, Harvard asked the Maine attorney general in January 2007 to allow it to sell the property, stating in court papers that the house needed “major capital repairs” and that the island’s remote location would force the school to pay an “exorbitant” amount of money for repair work that “far outweighs the income generated by the endowed maintenance fund.”

Maine’s attorney general raised no objection to the Kendall sale, and a judge approved the request on Jan. 23, 2007, 15 days after Harvard’s petition was filed.

Linda Conti, the assistant attorney general who handled the case, said in a phone interview that she made her decision based on the facts in Harvard’s petition. There was no hearing.

Boston Globe

Federal Court rules against EPA

The suit challenged the EPA’s regulation that permitted mercury emissions, much of it from midwest coal plants.

Maine and more than a dozen other states, along with environmental and public health groups, have won a federal lawsuit aimed at cutting mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants.

The U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C., ruled today that the Environmental Protection Agency violated the Clean Air Act in 2005 by setting rules that allow plants to discharge toxic mercury and avoid strict controls. The EPA’s “Clean Air Mercury Rule” would have created a cap-and-trade program to reduce overall nationwide emissions 70 percent by 2018.

– PressHerald

Chief Justice pleads for funding

In the annual address at the State House Chief Justice Leigh Saufley noted the need for additional funds.

Saufley also called on the state to increase funding for court-appointed lawyers. She says there has been a sharp increase in the number of cases in which defendants require state-funded attorneys, but the funding has not kept up pace.

“If meetings were solutions, we’d have this thing nailed. More meetings won’t help. The increase in filings isn’t going away. If the attorneys can’t be paid, criminal charges can’t be prosecuted, trials can’t be held and alleged victims will wait,” said Chief Justice Saufley.


RIAA wins a round

Those UMaine students challenging the RIAA failed in their effort to have the suit dismissed. Not sure how long the students plan to be in this battle, but it could go on for c.

Nine students at the University of Maine who are taking on the Recording Industry Association of America were rebuffed last week by a magistrate judge.

Margaret J. Kravchuk, a U.S. magistrate judge, sided with the recording-industry group. She recommended that the federal district court in Maine reject the students’ motion to dismiss the group’s lawsuit against them, saying that she disagreed with their reading of the 2007 Supreme Court case Bell Atlantic Corp v. Twombly