7th Circuit, Attorney Misconduct, Benchslaps, Federal Judges, Frank Easterbrook, Legal Ethics, Quote of the Day

Quote(s) of the Day: Oh, professionalism is overrated.
(Or: Mess with the Easterbrook, you get the horns.)

Greco is a menace to his clients and a scofflaw with respect to appellate procedure. The district court may wish to consider whether he should remain a member of its bar. Would-be clients should consider how Greco has treated [his clients] Lee, Washington, and Moore.

— Chief Judge Frank Easterbrook of the Seventh Circuit, benchslapping attorney Michael J. Greco in Lee v. Cook County.

(Additional gems from the opinion — this is just the tip of the iceberg — appear after the jump.)

Greco’s calamitous handling of this litigation in the district court has been followed by a sloppy performance in this court. As we’ve mentioned, Greco has never related why he did not appeal in September 2008 or file new suits by the end of October 2008. And his performance has been marked by procedural gaffes, three of which led to orders to show cause why the appeal should not be dismissed — and one of which led to his clients’ brief being struck….

Greco’s response to this last show-cause order, the fourth in a single appeal, is consistent with his performance throughout the litigation. It slights one of the two subjects we directed him to address and does not tell us why he failed to return calls from the clerk’s office and disregarded Rule 31(e) until the third show-cause order was issued. (He does say that “Greco has not ignored telephone calls from this court”, which essentially accuses the staff of the clerk’s office of lying about trying to reach him. We think that unlikely.) ….

Greco has not asked for a hearing on the disciplinary order to show cause, and we now conclude that he has comported himself unprofessionally. We reprimand Greco for this unprofessional behavior and fine him $5,000, payable to the Clerk within 14 days. Greco must send Lee, Washington, and Moore copies of this opinion so that they may consider whether to file malpractice suits against him….

Lee v. Cook County (7th Cir. Mar. 22, 2011) (Easterbrook, C.J., benchslapping).

Earlier: Quote of the Day: Oh, explanation is overrated.
Quote of the Day: Oh, precedent is overrated.

(hidden for your protection)

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