April 15, 2003

This is the Legacy of Abu Abbas.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 11:07 pm

This is the legacy of Abu Abbas, the mastermind of the hijacking of the Achille Lauro cruise ship in 1985. During the course of this crime, Leon Klinghoffer, a 69 year old American passenger who was confined to a wheelchair, was shot and thrown overboard in his wheelchair. All this was done in front of his wife.

Abu Abbas was arrested in Baghdad and is now in American custody. I cannot imagine punishment that would be too severe.

New Jersey Lawyer Will Do Time.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 8:52 pm

While the Garden State is often associated with the Sopranos and their real-life counterparts who somehow seem to evade prosecution, New Jersey does not tolerate lawyers who steal from their clients. Robert Burrick, an attorney who worked at one of New Jersey’s more prestigious law firms, was sentenced yesterday to eighteen months in federal prison for embezzling $120,000 from his former clients and from the local soccer club, where his children played, and which had elected Mr. Burrick as treasurer.

Burrick’s “distorted sense of entitlement and, to a large sense, his greed,” according to the Assistant U.S. Attorney prosecuting the case, drove Burrick’s actions. Burrick offered no explanation for his behavior other than to say that clinical depression might have played a role.

In addition to doing jail time, Mr. Burrick has lost the $400,000 per year income from his law firm, he has lost his reputation, and he will surely be disbarred, if that has not already happened. Lawyers are disbarred in New Jersey for a good deal less, and in cases of theft from clients’ trust accounts, disbarment is a virtual certainty.

I feel sorry for his children.

In New Jersey all licensed attorneys (with very few exceptions) are required to pay annually into a client security fund, the proceeds of which are used to help re-pay clients who are bilked by dishonest lawyers. I hope the fund is able to cover most, if not all, of the $30,000 that Mr. Burrick stole from the children’s soccer club…

Fortunately, Mr. Burrick is the exception. Unfortunately, that doesn’t make it any less sad.

Powered by WordPress