State Bar Disciplinary Hearing Officially Concludes for Andrew Thomas and Underlings; Decision Expected by March

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Andrew Thomas will wait until March to find out if his law license will be yanked.

The Arizona State Bar's disciplinary proceeding against former Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas and two of his former employees wrapped up today.


The three-man panel that oversaw the case is expected to make a decision on their findings -- and the punishment, if any -- by March.


Thomas and former deputy county attorney Lisa Aubuchon face potential disbarment in the case, which involved accusations of severe ethical violations in the attempted prosecutions of county leaders. Another former prosecutor who'd served under Thomas, conservative blogger Rachel Alexander, faces possible suspension of her law license.


The state Supreme Court's spokeswoman, Jennifer Liewer, released a schedule today that outlines how thing will proceed from here. We'll paraphrase:


 

The State Bar's independent counsel must file a written brief containing their "proposed conclusions and findings of fact," (their closing arguments, in other words), to the panel by Friday, Dec. 30.

The lawyers for Thomas and his former minions must then reply to that brief by by Friday, Jan. 16, 2012. The bar counsel then gets the last word, with a response that has to be filed by January 31.

Liewer's e-mail says the panel then has 30 days to file its findings. The State Bar's disciplinary judge, William O'Neil, "announced that he will reconvene the hearing panel when the order is complete. A 24 hour notice will be given to all parties, media and the public about the hearing. The panel will then announce their findings and the full written opinion will be released to the public."

As Liewer told us before, if the panel decides on a punishment like suspension or disbarment, it'll be an "order" and not just a recommendation. But the lawyers still have a right to appeal that order to the state Supreme Court.

After the high court weighs in, if it decides to, it'll be over -- but for the lawsuits.

Today, the last day of witness testimony, Rachel Alexander and Lisa Aubuchon were back on the stand. Judging from Arizona Republic reporter Yvonne Wingett Sanchez's frenzied tweets (while on vacation), the lawyers' previous testimony doesn't seem to have impressed the panel.

Lisa Aubuchon's dad also testified today. And guess what? He thinks his daughter's a good lawyer.

See the archived videos here.



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11 comments
Former Republican
Former Republican

Pearce ousted tonight! Next ....Thomas/Aubuchon/Alexander/arpaio/brewer/coughlin... for starters. Abuse of power will not be tolerated.

Truthsayer
Truthsayer

Funny, and not hahaha funny, how it takes much longer to disbar a member of the royalty elite than it does to convict someone of robbery and murder and put them away in prison for the rest of their life.  

WhoKnows
WhoKnows

An interesting part of the hearing (about halfway through the afternoon testimony) was when Alexander called out a person, by name, for posting "mean things" about her on the New Times. (a county employee, not a New Times writer)

Bet she has as much poof of that as she does that Donahoe accepted bribes!

Jason
Jason

I was kind of hoping we'd find out by Thanksgiving if Candy Andy and the Miscreants were going to be disbarred.

Then again, the fact that Thomas & Co. are finally being held accountable for their BS is a breath of fresh air in a state with such a putrid stench of corruption.

Simply disbarring Candy Andy and the Miscreants, and then prohibiting them from ever reapplying for their law license, followed up with a nice, juicy federal indictment will truly be the only real solution.

BTW, what exactly is the status of the DOJ GJ investigation into the MCSO shurf, Hendy, Candy Andy, etc.?

Gerry_C
Gerry_C

Although this is a slow process, it is at least moving toward finality.

Concerned Citizen/Taxpayer
Concerned Citizen/Taxpayer

Ray, Great reporting. Thank you for the links to the archived hearings, which all people interested in their liberty, rights and fair justice should watch. Pure corruption of the justice system unfolds before your eyes and confirms what we've all been saying for years. These three should be disbarred and sent to prison for the innocent lives they've destroyed along with Arizona's future. Next -- a major housecleaning of the MCAO and the MCSO is in order! Over 200,000 felony cases since 2005 is outrageous!  It will cost the taxpayers for decades.

Ross
Ross

Presumably, Andrew Thomas's father thinks his son is a bad lawyer.

sloppyburger
sloppyburger

remember ..........we are dealing with BACKWOODS ARIZONA POLITICS............

Gerry_C
Gerry_C

Does it really matter?  I could post something really nice about Rachel and it would not matter either.  I am a disinterested party.

sloppyburger
sloppyburger

NOW   lets get something going againast the  other half of the dynamic duo   Arpaio ........

sloppyburger
sloppyburger

Then after the revelations of the fired MCSO officers ................sprinkle in a little BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN     and some DELIVERENCE ....................

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