WASHINGTON, Oct. 5, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- County government payments of "double benefits" to judges have created serious conflicts of interest for State Superior Court judges in California according to John G. Baron, a Full Disclosure Network® legal analyst. Baron, who is featured in this video news report, says the conflicts came to light when all California judges were given retroactive immunity from criminal prosecution in 2009 by the State Legislature in Senate Bill SBX2-11 that is now being challenged by the Commission on Judicial Performance.
Watch video here: http://www.fulldisclosure.net/Blogs/105.php
County Payments To Judges Obstructing Justice
Baron provides details of this Writ of Mandate recently filed with the California Court of Appeals' 2nd District by Los Angeles Civic Activist David R. Hernandez. He explains that Hernandez is asking the Court to "Disqualify" Judge Robert H. O'Brien from presiding on the case Hernandez vs. County of Los Angeles where he is being asked to set aside the Void Orders of Judge David Yaffe who received $860,000 in payments from L A County. According to the L.A. County Auditor-Controller's Office Judge O'Brien has taken over $230,000 in payments from the County in addition to his State-paid salary and benefits raising the issue of how can a judge be a judge on a case where the outcome impacts his own personal financial interest.
Judicial Conflict Obstructs Democratic Process
Judge David P. Yaffe, who resigned from office in September 2010 presided over the 2007 challenge to "Proposition R" election Hernandez v. County of Los Angeles. The ballot language claimed to be a "Term Limit" measure for City Council members but actually extended the City Council terms from two to three four-year terms and also relaxed lobbyist reporting laws appearing to violate the "One Subject Rule" of the California Constitution.
Judges Prohibited From Taking "Extra" Money
The Hernandez Writ of Mandate contends neither the County of Los Angeles nor the judges have disclosed their apparent conflict of interest. Yet, Judge O'Brien has stricken Hernandez's motion to disqualify him from hearing the case. Hernandez is contending that Judicial Canons of Ethics and the State Constitution prohibit California judges from taking money from parties appearing before them and require disclosure to litigants in their courtrooms.
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Contact: Leslie Dutton 310-822-4449 www.fulldisclosure.net
SOURCE Full Disclosure Network