Thursday, August 18, 2011

Kevin Gleason Offers Wine as Peace Offering to Bankruptcy Judge Olson.



So it all comes down to this: an apology and a bottle of wine.

What, no flowers?  No chocolate?

And guess what -- those vituperative responses was all borne from frustration:
B. The Responses Are the Product of Frustration.

14. Attorney Gleason’s responses are the product of frustration due in large part to the
Court’s mistaken conclusion that his client had assented, pursuant to an agreed order, to the turnover of his commission to the plan administrator. The proper method to seek redress in such circumstances is to file an appeal, which Attorney Gleason did. During the pendency of the appeal, which was filed on November 4, 2010, the Court issued the Show Cause Order and later submitted the order for publication with Westlaw. This unfortunate turn of events escalated what was initially perceived as a mere legal conflict into something more personal in nature. The Responses, while intentional, do not reflect a dishonest or selfish motive.
I see -- the old "Westlaw-as-provocation" defense.

In other words, the judge should have kept quiet about the whole thing, but he had to go and blab about it to all our neighbors!

13 comments:

  1. The Show Cause Order went viral not because of publication on Westlaw but because one of the CM/ECF recipients (and in bankruptcy cases there are usually many) probably sent it to a blog. Anything filed in any federal case is fair game nowadays on the internet.

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  2. SFL broke this story.

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  3. I think no one wants to see the forest through the trees. The SDFLA bankruptcy courts had 2 back-to-back 'bernie madoffs' exposed, Lew Freeman and Marika Tolz. They operated longer than Madoff did and, like Madoff, were only caught when "the check bounced" ending ongoing ponzi schemes.
    Yet, unlike with the SEC, there were no hearings or investigations as to how local bankruptcy judges, who are supposed to supervise officers of the court, could let this happen. Instead, the big "problem," is an errant lawyer who pierced some very thin skin and who should have been quietly and quickly fined.
    If Gleason was right in his basic criticism of Judge Olson, sans the extra language, then that is additional cause for concern where a good chuck of the assets of Florida are passing through bankruptcy courts that have overwhelmingly misplaced priorities.

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  4. Seems to me the apology was kind of like - 'I apologize for Judge Olson rendering bad ruling and being an asshole - my client should not have called him out on it.'

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  5. 9:22: Not really. State of mind is clearly relevant, particularly if the perceived wrong to Gleason was accurate ... obviously a mitigating factor.
    Irony upon irony, Judge Olson and his then boyfriend/fiancee, Mr. Fender, both benefited from Mr. Fender's hiring by a local firm that regularly appeared before Judge Olson. There was no disclosure of the conflict and no return of legal fees ... the very issue in Gleason's case.

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  6. 8:01 Anonymous-Get your facts straight. Bankruptcy judges are not on the bench to "supervise officers of the court". They are there to render judgments. Financial improprities in bankruptcy cases a la Ms. Tolz & Mr. Freedman is directly laid at the doorstep of the Department of Justice [US Trustee], which was how these improprities were uncovered, you putz.

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  7. 3:24: Struck a nerve? the term "officer of the court" says it all. A bankruptcy judge lends his authority (and, in effect, virtually immunity) to his "officers of the court" who he appoints. The judge reviews and approves all fee applications, estate disbursements, accounting statements filed and applies the law to matters that are completely dependent on his analysis and review of financial matters. He, in effect, has similar or analogous responsibilities to those of an SEC commissioner, supervisor and/or investigator rolled into one ... after all, the buck stops somewhere. If the Department of Justice had the duties of a bankruptcy judge there wouldn't be such judges.
    Also, no need for intemperate language ... the issue is about Gleason's language, isn't it?

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  8. The "get your facts straight" commentator was right. It's the US Trustee's job - not the courts- to monitor, audit and/or supervise the financial dealings of the bankruptcy trustees as well as their transactions unrelated to the liquidation of assets.

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  9. re: bankruptcy judges and the US Trustee. It is common knowledge in Florida that the resources of the US Trustee's Office is limited, the US trustee's input to bankruptcy cases have minimal effect, the US Trustee largely follows the lead of local bankruptcy judges, the US Trustee's Office is many times a revolving door to lucrative private bankruptcy practice.
    In this light, when bankruptcy orders are issued (that concern large amounts of wealth) it is implicit in such orders that all possible input was considered and evaluated, including any perceived lack (or sufficiency) of financial controls needed to obtain accurate information to confidently issue orders. Clearly, ineffective controls encourages fraud and taints orders. In reality, the bankruptcy judge has ultimate control and responsibility for his orders. He can issue individual corrective orders to assure he has accurate information. There is plenty of blame to share.
    Regarding Madoff, Freeman and Tolz: all of their long running schemes ended not though normal audits but when they could not pay out demanded money that was no longer in their accounts. Only then did investigations begin ... when it was too late.

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  10. Kevin had it right. Judge Olson is not competent in the facts of the law. I have read dozens of his opinions and court transcripts that prove this. Fact upon fact, in case after case contains a large deal of misinformation and false allegations. The sad thing is that he's taking a position which should be one of honor and making a mockery of it by using his power arbitrarily. He is Judge Olson, not God Olson.

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  11. Here, I don't actually consider it is likely to have effect.

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