Criminal Justice

'Counsel' for Tenants Is Convicted for Two Decades of Unauthorized Practice

A Washington, D.C., man has been convicted of contempt of court for practicing law over two decades despite an order telling him to stop holding himself out as a lawyer.

Benoit Brookens, 62, was convicted on Thursday in a bench trial, according to The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times. He was accused of representing tenants in court, using titles like “esquire” and “counsel.”

The District of Columbia Court of Appeals ordered Brookens to stop practicing law in 1988, but he continued to do so, according to a press release quoted in the story. Brookens was not deterred by “the court’s orders, and multiple subsequent admonitions from D.C. agencies, including four administrative law judges,” the press release said.

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