Legal Ethics

Law License Spat: Has Ex-Judge Reformed?

  • Print.

Removed from the bench and eventually disbarred a decade ago for misbehavior that included what a court described as “offensive, harassing and vindictive” conduct, former Nassau County Judge Marc Mogil now wants his law license back.

However, the subject of a five-year harassment campaign by the then-judge is actively contesting Mogil’s application for reinstatement to the New York bar, saying that Mogil’s prior conduct shows he is unfit to practice, reports Newsday.

“This guy is absolutely dangerous and should not practice law or represent people,” says attorney Thomas Liotti. The Garden City, N.Y., practitioner says he received objectionable letters from Mogil over a five-year period, beginning in 1993.

The vendetta apparently began after Liotti, who was president of the Nassau County Criminal Courts Bar Association, aroused Mogil’s ire by inviting famed civil rights attorney William Kunstler to speak at a 1991 bar event, the Long Island newspaper recounts. By 1993, the situation had exacerbated to a point where “Liotti wrote to the county administrative judge challenging Mogil’s mental stability. He noted Mogil’s license plate read ‘GUILTY’ and that he was ‘unduly enamored with firearms.’ “

Mogil was disbarred on Dec. 16, 1998, after he was found guilty of what the newspaper describes as “six counts of judicial misconduct for lying under oath and sending threatening and harassing faxes and letters to Liotti.”

But Mogil “has had no problems since he was disbarred, so there really is no reason for him not to be readmitted,” once the Appellate Division of state Supreme Court has confirmed his fitness, says Chris McDonough, a lawyer representing Mogil. Another former attorney for Mogil describes him as “a good judge, a fair judge” and a “good guy” who “should have never been taken off the bench.”

In his letters to Liotti, Mogil didn’t hold back. The missives called Liotti names ranging from “motor mouth” to “donkey turd,” and accused him of child abuse and extramarital affairs, the newspaper says.

Give us feedback, share a story tip or update, or report an error.