Legal Ethics

Former judge convicted of fixing tickets suspended from law practice for 6 months


A former Jersey City municipal court chief judge who lost the job after her criminal conviction for fixing traffic tickets on behalf of her “significant other” has now also been suspended from the practice of law for six months for her act, the Legal Profession Blog reports.

The New Jersey Office of Attorney Ethics had recommended a two-to-three-year suspension for Wanda Molina, but the New Jersey Supreme Court’s Disciplinary Review Board—after comparing various ticket-fixing cases in the past and looking at mitigating factors—set it at six months.

The Review Board issued its decision in November and, based on it, the Supreme Court issued the suspension order last week. Molina was charged in 2007, and in 2010 entered a plea agreement that gave her probation and prevents her from holding public office again.

While the conduct was “improper and repetitive” (Molina dismissed or marked “emergency” on nine tickets over a six-month period between 2006 and 2007) “she advanced compelling mitigating factors that include her sincere contrition, previous unblemished record, otherwise good character and reputation in the community, and extensive civic efforts in the community,” the Review Board wrote (PDF).

Molina did not return a call late Thursday for comment.

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