Canada, Judge of the Day, Legal Ethics, Pornography, Sex, Sex Scandals

Accuser of Porn-Posing Canadian Judge Gets Fired

We don’t normally cross international borders to find judges to write about; there are enough colorful characters in the U.S. judiciary. But when the jurist in question has appeared in pornography that made its way on to the interwebs, we make an exception.

There are some updates in the tale of Madam Justice Lori Douglas, the Canadian judge who appeared in nude photos showing Her Honor engaging in bondage, playing with sex toys and performing oral sex. We previously “exposed” the story here and here.

The first one is an amusing yet cautionary tale. Just because your porn features a judicial angel in the centerfold doesn’t mean it’s not porn — and, as such, inappropriate to keep on your work computer.

This is a lesson that Alex Chapman, the man who has filed ethics complaint and civil lawsuits against Justice Douglas and her husband, prominent divorce lawyer Jack King, learned the hard way….

Manhattan judges aren’t the only folks who can get in trouble for having pornography on their office computers. The Toronto Globe and Mail reports:

Alex Chapman, 44, is out of a job at Great-West Life Assurance Co. partly because of sexually explicit photos of the judge that were kept on the laptop he used at work, said Sean Sam, a close friend of Mr. Chapman’s.

Moral of the story: judge porn is still porn. There’s a reason why Judge Douglas keeps her lady parts underneath her robe.

In the digital age, it’s not uncommon for people to store personal documents on work computers, or work documents on personal computers. This is often the most convenient approach. But it’s probably not the best practice:

Mr. Sam says his friend had been collecting files – the sexually explicit photos, e-mails and voice-mails sent to him from his former lawyer Jack King who was allegedly trying to get Mr. Chapman to sleep with his wife, Judge Douglas – on his work computer in a folder called Civil Matter. The files were meant to be evidence for a civil suit he intended to file against Mr. King and Judge Douglas, he said. But on Aug. 16, after Mr. Chapman had gone to the CBC with the story, the computer programmer was brought into a boardroom and questioned by an investigator and someone from human resources.

The appearance of an HR minion is never good news. Just ask Roxana St. Thomas.

And then things turned into a John Grisham novel:

They asked him about a name change Mr. Chapman made years ago when he came to Canada from the Caribbean. They also asked whether he’d tried to open an offshore bank account with Scotiabank to store “millions of dollars.” Mr. Chapman denied all of this, Mr. Sam said.

Porn pics featuring a sitting judge, surreptitious name changes, and offshore bank accounts intended to store millions? When did Canada turn into New Jersey?

This is just aboot the point where Chapman gets the boot:

On Tuesday, Mr. Sam said he was with Mr. Chapman when he phoned Great-West Life’s lawyer about returning to work. The lawyer said he was fired and that because of a court order filed last week for Mr. Chapman to return all of the photos and evidence he had, he could not return the disc of materials taken from Mr. Chapman’s computer.

There’s even more to the story; we’ve just given you highlights. According to CBC News, Chapman — who was initially suspended from his job with pay, before getting fired — was also asked about prior criminal convictions when he met with Great-West Life representatives. Chapman was officially pardoned for these offenses in 2001, but it seems like the convictions might have come as news to the company. (The story from CBC News, which has taken the lead on covering the Lori Douglas scandal, has a blow-by-blow account of the interactions between Chapman and Great-West Life.)

Meanwhile, there’s another update in L’Affaire Lori. From the Winnipeg Free Press:

A Winnipeg woman has made a formal com­plaint to the Canadian Judicial Council, claim­ing recent revelations about the personal life of Queen’s Bench Associate Chief Justice Lori Doug­las have led her to believe she was the victim of an unfair court hearing. The woman says she un­successfully filed for a prevention order against her estranged husband, a lawyer who admits to being a “sex addict,” while appearing before Douglas in 2008.

Without more, this seems like a stretch. We might not want to think about it, especially if they aren’t judicial superhotties, but as part of their private lives, judges have sex. Some judges, such as Justice Lori Douglas, might even have kinky sex. And some of them, again like Justice Douglas, might have pictures taken of the sex (for personal use; Justice Douglas’s husband claims that Her Honor didn’t agree to or know about his uploading of her pics to DarkCavern.com, a website focused on interracial sex).

Does the fact that they have sex, even kinky, photographed sex, mean that somehow judges can’t preside over cases involving sex? This reminds me of the position taken by some that Judge Vaughn Walker, who is reportedly gay, should recuse in the Prop 8 litigation — a view that Emily Bazelon rightly describes as “ridiculous.”

In fairness to this latest complainant, she bases her claim on a little more than just the facts that (1) her husband is a sex addict and (2) Justice Douglas is a sex goddess. The complainant wife also alleges that “her ex-husband and Douglas knew each before she [Douglas] became a judge” — but she doesn’t offer any details. Unless the two “knew” each other in the Biblical sense, this seems like pretty weak sauce.

Here’s one intriguing possibility: Is it possible that the complaining woman’s husband “knew” Justice Douglas in terms of being familiar with Her Honor’s, um, body of work (and we’re not talking jurisprudence)? If one party to a litigation has seen naked pictures of the presiding judge, and maybe even banged his gavel while looking at said pictures of the judge, does that create a legal ethics problem?

C’mon, guys — some of you just took the MPRE. Any thoughts?

Manitoba judge complainant fired from job [CBC News]
Manitoba judge complainant fired from job [Toronto Globe and Mail]
New complaint against judge [Winnipeg Free News]

Earlier: Porn-Posing Canadian Judge Puts Away the Gavel — For Now
Judge of the Day: Oh, Oh, Oh… Canada!
‘Cleavage-Crazed’ Judge Resigns After Porn Found on His Work Computer

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