Trials & Litigation

Judge Takes Fifth Amendment in Legal Ethics Case

A Tennessee judge has asserted his Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate himself in his answer to a legal ethics complaint.

Sessions Court Judge James Taylor is facing a Tennessee Court of the Judiciary client theft and misconduct case, the Knoxville News Sentinel reports. Taylor is also facing civil suits from former clients who allege he took money or other assets while representing them prior to his appointment to the sessions court bench last year.

The Kingsport Times-News also has a story.

The complaint filed against Taylor in January alleges he kept money he collected for a Ten Commandments display and billed the state for attorney work in cases he judged. Days later the complaint was filed, the Rogersville, Tenn., attorney general’s office and the public defender’s office based in Morristown, Tenn., asked Taylor to recuse himself from hearing cases. But Taylor refused to do so.

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