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Sacramento Family Court News


Investigative Reporting, News, Analysis, Opinion & Satire
HOME

TEMPORARY JUDGE CONTROVERSY

TANI G. CANTIL-SAKAUYE
ABOUT SFCN

3rd DISTRICT COA CONTROVERSY

ATTORNEY MISCONDUCT

CONTACT FAMILY COURT NEWS

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23 March 2013

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SUBJECTS AND POSTS

Tani Cantil-Sakauye Defendant & Jaime R. Roman Implicated in Federal


Class Action Lawsuit for Misuse of Vexatious Litigant Law

JUDICIAL MISCONDUCT

(72)

Controversial Order for Judge Pro Tem Attorney


Charlotte Keeley by Judge Jaime Roman Challenged
in Federal Class Action Lawsuit

ATTORNEY MISCONDUCT

(37)

Taxpayers Face Financial Liability

JUDGE PRO TEM


(51)

MATTHEW J. GARY
(34)
KICKBACKS
(33)
FLEC
(28)
PETER J. McBRIEN
(26)
ARTS & CULTURE
(23)
CHILD CUSTODY
(23)
ROBERT SAUNDERS
(22)
SCBA
(22)
CJP
(21)
JAMES M. MIZE
(21)
CHARLOTTE KEELEY
(19)

Supreme Court Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye is named as a defendant in this federal court litigation stemming from a vexatious
litigant court order issued by Sacramento Family Court Judge Jaime Roman for Judge Pro Tem Charlotte Keeley.

EMPLOYEE MISCONDUCT

(19)
WATCHDOGS
(19)

SACRAMENTO FAMILY COURT NEWS EXCLUSIVE


A November, 2012court order designating a Sacramento Family Courtparty as a vexatious litigant is being
challenged in a landmark federal class action lawsuit filed yesterday in United States District Court in San
Francisco. The controversial order was issued by family court Judge Jaime Roman at the request of temporary
judge and veteran family law attorneyCharlotte Keeley in a case with a long-running child custody dispute
between Andrew Karres andMel Rapton Honda heiress Katina Rapton.

PRO PERS
(18)

The order blacklisted [pdf] Karres as a vexatious litigant [pdf] and raised eyebrows in the legal community
because Roman issued the ruling without providing Karres the court hearing required under state law and the due
process provisions of the state and federal Constitutions.

ROBERT HIGHT
(14)

The vexatious litigant designation severely restricts a litigants access to the courts by requiring them to get preapproval from a presiding judge before they are permitted to file pleadings in any court in the state.Sacramento
Family Court News in Nov. 2012 reported exclusively on Judge Roman's unorthodox order, which also is
pending review by the Third District Court of Appeal in Sacramento. Taxpayers likely will now get two substantial

CARLSSON CASE
(12)

DIVORCE CORP
(17)
DOCUMENTS
(17)
PAULA SALINGER
(15)

SACRAMENTO SUPERIOR
COURT
(13)

RAPTON-KARRES
(12)
APPEALS
(11)

bills in connection with the Keeley-Roman ruling.

The state court appeal will cost the public between $8,500 and $25,500, according to recent appellate court
decisions. The public cost of defending the federal case could be significantly higher. For several years, court
watchdogs and whistleblowers have asserted that full-time judges give preferential treatment to judge pro tem
attorneys. They charge that the Rapton-Karres case is one of several cases emblematic of judge-attorney
cronyism and its effects, including the unnecessary use of scarce court resources and the financial burden on
taxpayers.

COLOR OF LAW SERIES

(11)
CONFLICT OF INTEREST

(11)
SATIRE
(11)
WHISTLEBLOWERS
(11)

To continue reading, click Read more >>below:

WOODRUFF O'HAIR
POSNER and SALINGER

(11)

Named as defendants in the federal class action lawsuit are


California Supreme Court Chief Justice and Judicial
Council Chair Tani Gorre Cantil-Sakauye and Steven Jahr,
the Administrative Director of the Administrative Office of
the Courts.

JAIME R. ROMAN
(10)
LAURIE M. EARL
(10)

In addition to Karres, the plaintiffs include eight other family


court parties from throughout the state. All have been
blacklisted as vexatious litigants in their respective courts.
"Plaintiffs, who are parents in on-going custody disputes,
bring this class action against Chief Justice CantilSakauye and the Judicial Council in the hope of
overturning California's Vexatious Litigant Statute
(VLS) as it applies to family law litigants, particularly
parents caught in protracted custody battles. The
Plaintiffs challenge the constitutionality of the VLS as it
is applied in the context of family law custody
proceedings. The Plaintiffs assert that the VLS on its
face and as applied infringes on their fundamental
custody rights," reads the introduction section of the
complaint.

NO CONTACT ORDERS
(10)
SHARON A. LUERAS
(10)
FERRIS CASE
(9)
JESSICA HERNANDEZ
(8)
ROBERT O'HAIR
(8)
CANTIL-SAKAUYE
(7)
JULIE SETZER
(7)
Justice Cantil-Sakauye is a former Sacramento
County Superior Court Judge.

Click here to read the complete lawsuit filed March 22. Sacramento Family Court News will provide continuing
coverage of the case.

MATTHEW HERNANDEZ
(7)
YOUTUBE
(7)
3rd DISTRICT COA
(6)
CIVIL RIGHTS
(6)

Related articles and posts:

CHRISTINA ARCURI
(5)

Click herefor our complete coverage


of the Rapton-Karres case.

CONTEMPT
(5)

Click herefor our reporting on Judge


Jaime R. Roman.
Click herefor coverage of judicial
misconduct.

MIKE NEWDOW
(5)

Click herefor our special Judge Pro


Tem Page.

THADD BLIZZARD
(5)

Posted by
PR Brown
at
8:19 PM

+6 Recommend this on Google

Labels:
CHARLOTTE KEELEY,
CHILD CUSTODY,
CHILD SUPPORT,
FEDERAL LAWSUITS,
JAIME R. ROMAN,
JUDGE PRO TEM,

JUDICIAL MISCONDUCT,
NEWS EXCLUSIVE,
RAPTON-KARRES,
VEXATIOUS LITIGANT,
VL-CLASS-ACTION

FAMILY LAW FACILITATOR

(4)
LUAN CASE
(4)

Location:
US District Court Clerk Northern District Of California, 450 Golden Gate Avenue #36060, San Francisco, CA 94102,

MALPRACTICE
(4)

USA

THOMAS M. CECIL
(4)
CHILD ABDUCTION
(3)

5 comments

VANCE W. RAYE
(3)
VEXATIOUS LITIGANT
(3)
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RACKETEERING
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Sacramento Family Court News


Investigative Reporting, News, Analysis, Opinion & Satire
HOME

TEMPORARY JUDGE CONTROVERSY

TANI G. CANTIL-SAKAUYE
ABOUT SFCN

3rd DISTRICT COA CONTROVERSY

ATTORNEY MISCONDUCT

CONTACT FAMILY COURT NEWS

SOURCE MATERIAL ARCHIVE

Terms & Conditions

RoadDog SATIRE

Privacy Policy

SHORTCUTS TO POPULAR
SUBJECTS AND POSTS

TEMPORARY JUDGE CONTROVERSY

Sacramento Superior Court Part-Time Judge


Program Controversy

JUDICIAL MISCONDUCT

(72)
JUDGE PRO TEM
(51)
ATTORNEY MISCONDUCT

(37)

Judge-Attorney "Cartel" Controls Court Operations Constitutes Racketeering Enterprise, Charge


Whistleblowers

MATTHEW J. GARY
(34)
KICKBACKS
(33)
FLEC
(28)
PETER J. McBRIEN
(26)

Sacramento Family Court News Exclusive Investigative Report


This special investigative report is ongoing and was last updated in October, 2015. Hyperlinks throughout this
report link to original source material including whistleblower leaked documents, records obtained under
public records law, public court documents, and our previously published articles with hyperlinks to source

CHILD CUSTODY
(23)
ROBERT SAUNDERS
(22)

material.

SCBA
(22)

As many of the articles on our main page


reflect,Sacramento Superior Court employee
whistleblowers and other court watchdogs contend
that a "cartel" oflocal family lawattorneys receive
kickbacks and other forms ofpreferential treatment
from family courtjudges, administrators and
employees.

CJP
(21)
JAMES M. MIZE
(21)
CHARLOTTE KEELEY
(19)
EMPLOYEE MISCONDUCT

(19)

The whistleblowers assert that lawyers in the


privileged group receive an assortment of illegal perks
because they volunteer towork as part-time
judgesand run the family court settlement
conference program on behalf of the court.

WATCHDOGS
(19)
PRO PERS
(18)
DIVORCE CORP
(17)

The kickbacks usually consist of "rubber-stamped"


court ordersissued when the attorneys represent
clients in court. The orders consistently are contrary
to established law, and the rulings cannot be
attributed to the exercise of judicial discretion.

As a matter of law, the orders are illegal, according


to court reform advocates, "outsider" attorneys, and
thelaw practice reference publicationsused by
judges and lawyers.SFCN hasposted the
ordersonline atScribdand other document
publishingsites. Order links are provided throughout
this report.

ARTS & CULTURE


(23)

DOCUMENTS
(17)
PAULA SALINGER
(15)
ROBERT HIGHT
(14)
SACRAMENTO SUPERIOR
COURT
(13)
Sacramento Superior Court reform advocates assert that collusion
between judges and local attorneys deprives pro per court users of
their parental rights, community assets, and due process and access
to the court constitutional rights.

CARLSSON CASE
(12)
RAPTON-KARRES
(12)
APPEALS
(11)

Scheme Primarily Targets Divorce Cases Where Only One Side Has a Lawyer

Most of the demonstrablyillegal orders are issued against indigent, or financially disadvantaged "pro per"
parties without an attorney. Manypro per litigants-who make up over 70 percent of court users -also are
disabled.

In most cases, pro pers - who have little or no knowledge of family law - are unaware that the orders issued against
them are illegal. In addition, court clerks and employees are trained or encouraged tointentionally, and illegally
mislead unrepresented parties about their appeal rights. Pro pers who do attempt to file an appeal are forced to
navigate a gauntlet of unlawful obstructionserected by court employees andtrial court judges,and most
eventually give up.
Further handicapping pro pers, when representing clients in court judge pro tem lawyers are allowed to obstruct an
opposing parties' court access and ability to file documents through the court-sanctioned misuse ofvexatious
litigant lawand Family Codecase management law,according to whistleblowers andcourt records.The illegal
litigation tactic effectively deprives pro per litigants of their constitutional right of access to the courts, a violation of
federal law.

In exchange for acting as sworn temporary judges, operating the settlement program and reducing the caseload
and workload of judges and court employees, the attorneys also receive preferential trial scheduling, an
unlawful "emolument, gratuity or reward" prohibited by Penal Code 94.

The ultimate consequences of the systemic divorce court corruption include one-sided divisions of community
property, illegal child custody arrangements and the deprivation of parental rights, and unlawful child and
spousal support terms.

Court reform advocates also assert that the racketeering enterprise enables rampant fee churningandunjust
enrichmentby judge pro tem divorce lawyers, results in pro per financial devastation,homelessness, and
imprisonment, and hascaused, or contributed to at least two child deaths.

Years of illegal, pay-to-play child custody orders have resulted in the formation of several Sacramento-based court
reform and oversight organizations, including Fathers 4 Justice, California Protective Parents Association, and
the Family Court Accountability Coalition. The same family court watchdog group phenomenon has not
occurred in any other county in the state.

COLOR OF LAW SERIES

(11)
CONFLICT OF INTEREST

(11)
SATIRE
(11)
WHISTLEBLOWERS
(11)
WOODRUFF O'HAIR
POSNER and SALINGER

(11)
JAIME R. ROMAN
(10)
LAURIE M. EARL
(10)
NO CONTACT ORDERS
(10)
SHARON A. LUERAS
(10)
FERRIS CASE
(9)
JESSICA HERNANDEZ
(8)
ROBERT O'HAIR
(8)
CANTIL-SAKAUYE
(7)
JULIE SETZER
(7)
MATTHEW HERNANDEZ
(7)
YOUTUBE
(7)
3rd DISTRICT COA
(6)
CIVIL RIGHTS
(6)
CHRISTINA ARCURI
(5)
CONTEMPT
(5)
MIKE NEWDOW
(5)
THADD BLIZZARD
(5)
FAMILY LAW FACILITATOR

(4)

During three days of sworn testimony at his Commission on Judicial Performance misconduct prosecution, Judge Peter McBrien
inadvertently revealed aspects of an alleged RICO racketeering enterprise operating in the Sacramento County family court system.

LUAN CASE
(4)
MALPRACTICE
(4)

The alleged criminal conduct also deprives victims of their state and federal constitutional rights, including due
process, equal protection of law, access to the courts, and the fundamental liberty interest in the care,
management and companionship of their own children, according to several "outsider" attorneys.

Court watchdogs charge that the settlement conference kickback arrangement between the public court and private
sector attorneys constitutes aracketeering enterprisewhich also deprives the public of thefederally
protectedright tohonest government services.

THOMAS M. CECIL
(4)
CHILD ABDUCTION
(3)
VANCE W. RAYE
(3)
VEXATIOUS LITIGANT
(3)

The alleged federal crimes also include thetheft, misuse, or conversion of federal fundsreceived by the court,
predicate acts ofmail or wire fraud,andpredicate state law crimes, including obstruction of justice,child
abduction, and receipt of an illegal emolument, gratuity, or reward by a judicial officer(Penal Code 94).

RACKETEERING
(2)

With the help of court employeewhistleblowers, Sacramento Family Court News has partially reconstructed the
framework of the alleged criminal enterprise that, in scale and scope, rivals theKids for Cashcourt scandal in
Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, and the Orange County Superior Court case-fixing corruption scheme recently
exposed by the FBI.

WE SUPPORT
Electronic Frontier
Foundation
First Amendment Coalition

Settlement Conference Program Quid Pro Quo Arrangement

Californians Aware

The current day Sacramento County Family Court


system and judge pro tem attorney operated
settlement conference program was set up in 1991
by Judge Vance Raye,Judge Peter McBrien and
lawyers from theSacramento County Bar Association
Family Law Section, according to the sworn
testimony of McBrienat his 2009Commission on
Judicial Performancemisconduct prosecution.

LAW BLOGS WE LIKE


Family Law Professor Blog
Law Librarian Blog
Law Professor Blogs
Thurman Arnold Family
Law Blog

Click here to read the transcript of the controversial


judge's testimony.

In his own testimony during the same proceedings,


local veteran family law attorney and judge pro tem
Robert J. O'Hair corroborated McBrien's testimony
and attested to McBrien's character and value to
Sacramento County Bar Association Family Law
Section members. Click here to view this excerpt of
O'Hair's testimony. To view O'Hair's complete
testimony, click here.

Kafkaesq
Above the Law
The Divorce Artist

3rd District Court of Appeal Presiding Justice Vance Raye


is the co-architect of the current Sacramento County Family
Court system. Click here for details.

Judge Vance Raye is now the Presiding Justice of


the 3rd District Court of Appeal in Sacramento, the
court responsible for hearing appeals from Sacramento Superior Court. The appellate court has been embroiled in
a number of controversies surrounding the review of Sacramento family court cases.

In 2012,troubled Sacramento County Judge James Mize, - a personal friend of McBrien - further privatized
family court services and expanded the ability of ostensibly "volunteer" temporary judge lawyers to earn kickbacks
and other preferential treatment with his so-called "One Day Divorce Program."

Court watchdogs charge that the system was designed to, and does servethe needs and financial interests of
family law lawyers at the expense of the 70 percent of family court users who cannot afford representation.

LEGAL NEWS &


INFORMATION
California Lawyer Magazine
Courthouse News Service
Metropolitan News
Enterprise
California Official Case Law
Google Scholar-Includes
Unpublished Case Law
California Statutes

Reducing the Caseload and Workload of Judges and Court Staff in Exchange for
Kickbacks

One objective of the allegedlyillegal public-private


partnership is to significantly reduce the caseload, and
workload of full-time judges by having private sector
lawyers - instead of judges or court staff - operate the
settlement program, according to watchdogs.

CALIFORNIA JUDICIAL
BRANCH
California Courts
Homepage
California Courts YouTube
Page

At the settlement conferences, judge pro tem attorneys


pressure divorcing couples to settle cases so they won't
use the trial court services, including law and motion
hearings, ordinarily required to resolve a contested
divorce.

Judicial Council
Commission on Judicial
Performance
Sacramento County Family
Court

In many cases, two lawyers - one acting as a temporary


judge - with social and professional ties team up against an
unrepresented pro per to compel one-sided settlement
terms. Accounts of coercive and deceptive tactics are
common.

3rd District Court of Appeal


State Bar of California
State Bar Court

In sworn testimony during his judicial misconduct


prosecution by the Commission on Judicial Performance,
Judge McBrien inadvertently revealed that an incredible 90
percent of cases assigned to his courtroom settled. "And so
I, frankly, have a very light calendar on law and motion
mornings," the judge added.

Sacramento County Bar


Association

The 2014 documentary film Divorce Corp exposed court


corruption throughout the United States and designated
Sacramento County as the worst-of-the-worst.

Under the quid pro quo agreement, in exchange for


reducing the workload of judges and court staff, as opportunities arise the temporary judge attorneys are provided
reciprocalkickbacks, gratuities, or emoluments when representing clients in court. The issuance and receipt of
the reciprocal benefits violates several state and federal criminal, and civillaws.

Local & National Family CourtFamily Law Sites & Blogs (may
be gender-specific)
ABA Family Law Blawg
Directory


Reciprocal benefits include the issuance ofdemonstrably illegal court orders that have ignored, and even
authorized criminal conduct by judge pro tem attorneys and their clients, including criminal child abduction.

In one case, a judge ordered the illegal arrest and assault of a disabled pro per to benefit the opposing, part-time
judge attorney. A court employee whistleblower leaked a courtroom security video of the incident. The judge pro
tem lawyer subsequently was caught on court reporter transcript defending the judge andlying about the arrest
and assault, portraying the disabled victim as being at fault.

The consistent, statistically impossible in-court success rate of judge pro tem attorneys has provided
themprominence, client referrals, wealth, and a substantial monopoly on the Sacramento County divorce and
family law business. Whistleblowers point out that this benefit of the alleged criminal organization also implicates
consumer protection andantitrust laws, including the CaliforniaUnfair Business Practices Act.

California Coalition for


Families and Children
California Protective
Parents Association
Center for Judicial
Excellence
Courageous Kids Network
Divorce & Family Law News
Divorce Corp
Divorced Girl Smiling

Racketeering Scheme Insulates Members from Government Oversight and


Accountability

Family Law Case Law from


FindLaw
Family Law Courts.com
Family Law Updates at
JDSupra Law News
Fathers 4 Justice
HuffPost Divorce
Leon Koziol.Com
Moving Past Divorce
News and Views Riverside
Superior Court
Weightier Matter

Total Pageviews

188145
Whistleblowers claim that Sacramento Family Court corruption results in the misuse of federal funds, deprives the public of the federally
protected right to honest government services, and deprives unrepresented, disabled, and financially disadvantaged court users of their
civil rights.

182

The quid pro quo arrangement also involves what whistleblowers assert is a reciprocal protection racket that
conceals the organization from discovery by law enforcement agencies and state oversight authorities, including
the Commission on Judicial Performance, responsible for judge misconduct, and the State Bar Association,
responsible for attorney accountability and discipline.

Case audits conducted by SFCN show that judge pro tem attorneys routinely violate state law, court rules, and
attorney ethics rules, but are never reported to the State Bar, or assessed fines, penalties or "sanctions" by fulltime judges as required by state law.

Pro pers who attempt to report judge pro tem attorney misconduct to the State Bar are told they need a court
order from a judge before a disciplinary investigation against an opposing attorney can take place. There are no
known instances where a judge issued such an order.

Court records leaked by whistleblowers also indicate that the under quid pro quo agreement, judges effectively
shield attorneys from criminal investigation and prosecution for alleged crimes, including witness intimidation,
childabduction,filing counterfeit documents, and violations of state and federal civil rights laws.

On the other hand, at the request of cartel attorneys, pro per litigants are routinely punished by judges with illegal
fines, draconian financial sanctions, and other types of punishment to discourage them from returning to
court, and to coerce them to accept settlement terms dictated by the opposing judge pro tem lawyers.

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Labels

2011 SACRAMENTO/MARIN
AUDITS
(2)
3rd DISTRICT

COA
(6)
AB

1102
(1)
AB 590

(1)
ABA JOURNAL
(1)
ABOVE THE

LAW

(1)

ADA

(11)

ADMINISTRATORS

(4)

AGGREGATED NEWS

(15)
AL SALMEN
(1)

AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION


(1)

ANALYSIS
(38)

FURILLO

(2)

ANDY

AOC

(1)


Attorneys provide judges reciprocal protection by not reporting the judicial misconduct, Code of Judicial Ethics
violations, and criminal conduct committed by full-time judge cartel members. And the lawyers do more.

To help conceal and ensure the continuity of the enterprise, on the rare occasion when full-time judges doface
investigation by the Commission on Judicial Performance, members of the cartel provide false, misleading, or
otherwise gratuitous character witness testimony and other forms of support for the offending judge. The
testimony and support is designed to, and does reduce or eliminate potential punishment by the CJP, ensuring
judge members remain on the bench.

APPEALS
(11)
ARCHIBALD
CUNNINGHAM
(1)
ARTHUR G.
SCOTLAND
(5)
ARTS &

CULTURE

DISCIPLINE
(4)
ATTORNEY

ATTORNEY
MISCONDUCT
(37)

ETHICS
(2)

ATTORNEYS
(11)
BAR
ASSOCIATION
(11)
BARACK
OBAMA
(1)
BARTHOLOMEW
and WASZNICKY
(3)
BUNMI

Racketeering Conduct of Court Clerks, Supervisors and the Family Law Facilitator

AWONIYI

The racketeering activity includes startling coordination, kickbacks, andpattern and practice misconductby court
clerks, supervisors, and theFamily Law Facilitatoroffice. Court clerks routinelyrefuse to filelegallysufficient
paperworkfor pro per parties, while at the same timefilinglegallyinsufficient, andeven counterfeitpaperwork which they arerequired by lawto reject for filing - for judge pro tem attorneys.
In some cases, judges and court clerks
work in tandem toprevent pro per
partiesfrom filing documentsat court
hearingsfor the benefit of judge pro
tems, deliberately creating an
incomplete and inaccurate trial court
record in the event the pro per files an
appeal.
Court records showthat clerks also
deliberately withhold and delay the
filing of time sensitive pro per
documents until after filing deadlines
have expired.

CALIFORNIA

(1)
CALIFORNIA

LAWYER
(1)

CALIFORNIANS AWARE
(1)

CAMILLE HEMMER
(3)

CANTIL-SAKAUYE
(7)

CARLSSON CASE
(12)

CECIL and CIANCI


(2)
CEO

(4)

CHARLOTTE
KEELEY
(19)
CHILD
ABDUCTION
(3)
CHILD
CUSTODY
(23)
CHILD

SUPPORT
(4)
CHRISTINA

ARCURI
(5)
CHRISTINA
VOLKERS
(7)
CIVICS
(1)

CIVIL LIABILITY
(1)
CIVIL
RIGHTS
(6)
CJA
(3)
CJE
(2)
In this case, a court clerk illegally "unfiled" a notice of appeal filed by an indigent,
disabled pro per litigant. Click here for details.

Alleged RICO Racketeering Enterprise Evidence

Court reform and accountability advocates assert that the local family law bar- through the Family Law
ExecutiveCommitteeor FLEC - continues to control for the financial gain of members virtually all aspects of court
operations, and have catalogued documented examples of judge pro tem attorney preferential treatment and
bias against unrepresented litigants and"outsider" attorneys,including:

Judge pro tem attorneys Charlotte


Keeley, Richard Sokol, Elaine Van
Beveren and Dianne Fetzer are each
accused of unethical conduct in the
problem cases included in the movie.
The infamous Carlsson case,
featuring judge pro tem attorney
Charlotte Keeley and Judge Peter
McBrien is the central case profiled in
the documentary, with Sacramento

(1)

JUDICIAL CONDUCT HANDBOOK

Family Law Facilitatorstaff provide pro per litigantswith false informationdesigned to concealstate law
violationsby court clerks and supervisors. Judges regularly provide attorneys withlegal advice and "bench
tips."When pro pers ask facilitator staff for similar information, they are told that facilitator employees are
prohibited from giving legal advice.

Divorce Corp, a documentary film that


"exposes the corrupt and collusive
industry of family law in the United
States" was released in major U.S.
cities on January 10, 2014. After a
nationwide search for the most
egregious examples of family court
corruption, the movie's production
team ultimately included fourcases
from Sacramento County in the film,
more than any other jurisdiction.

(23)

ATTORNEY
(4)
ATTORNEY

CJEO

CJP
(21)

(1)

ClientTickler
(2)
CNN
(1)

CODE
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JUDICIAL
ETHICS
(12)
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(2)
COLLEEN
MCDONAGH
(3)
COLOR OF

LAW
SERIES

(11)

CONFLICT OF INTEREST

(11)
CONSTITUTIONAL
RIGHTS
(3)
CONTEMPT
(5)

CORRUPTION
(1)
COURT
CONDITIONS
(2)
COURT

EMPLOYEE
(1)
COURT EMPLOYEE
CODE OF ETHICS
(1)
COURT
POLICIES
(1)
COURT RULES

(4)
COURTS
(1)
CPG FAMILY LAW

(1)
CRIMINAL CONDUCT

(13)
CRIMINAL LAW
(3)

CRONYISM
(2)
DAVID

KAZZIE
(4)
DEMOTION
(1)
RICHARDS
(1)
DIANE
WASZNICKY

(2)

DISQUALIFICATION
(2)

DENISE

DIVORCE
(7)
DIVORCE
ATTORNEY
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DIVORCE
CORP
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LAWYER

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DOCUMENTS
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DONALD TENN
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EFFICIENCY

IN

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ELAINE VAN
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(13)
ELECTIONS
(1)
AWARD
(1)

EMILY

GALLUP

(3)

EMPLOYEE CODE OF ETHICS

(4)

EMPLOYEE
MISCONDUCT
(19)

EQUAL

PROTECTION
(2)

County portrayed as theGround


Zeroof family court corruption and
collusion in the U.S. Click here for our
complete coverage of Divorce Corp.

Divorce Corp, chronicling Sacramento Superior Court corruption,


is available on Netflix.

(2)
EX PARTE
(1)
F4J
(4)

FAMILY COURT
(9)
FAMILY

Judge Thadd Blizzard issued a rubber-stamped, kickback order in November, 2013 for judge pro tem
attorney Richard Sokol authorizing an illegal out-of-state move away and child abduction by Sokol's
client, April Berger. The opposing counsel is an "outsider" attorney from San Francisco who was
dumbfounded by the order. Click here for our exclusive report, which includes the complete court
reporter transcript from the hearing. Click here for our earlier report on the unethical practice of
"hometowning" and the prejudicial treatment of outsider attorneys.
Whistleblower leaked court records indicate that Sacramento Bar Association Family Law
Executive Committee officer and judge pro tem attorney Paula Salinger engaged in obstruction of
justice crimes against an indigent, unrepresented domestic violence victim. The victim was a witness in
a criminal contempt case against a Salinger client. The circumstances surrounding the obstruction of
justice incident also infer collusion between Salinger and controversial Judge Matthew J. Gary. For
our complete investigative report,click here.
Two "standing orders" still in effect after being issued by Judge Roland Candee in 2006 override a
California Rule of Court prohibiting temporary judges from serving in family law cases where one party
is self-represented and the other party is represented by an attorney or is an attorney. The orders were
renewed by Presiding Judge Laurie M. Earl in February, 2013.Click here for details.
Sacramento Family Court judges ignore state conflict of interest laws requiring them to disclose to
opposing parties when a judge pro tem working as a private attorney represents a client in family
court. Click here for our exclusive investigative report. Click here for a list of other conflict of interest
posts.
Family court policies and procedures, including local court rules, are dictated by the SCBA Family Law
Executive Committeefor the financial benefit of private sector attorneys, and often disadvantage the
70 percent of court users without lawyers, according to family court watchdogs and whistleblowers.
For example, in sworn testimony by Judge Peter McBrien before the Commission on Judicial
Performance,McBrien described seeking and obtaining permission from FLEC to change a local rule.
Click here and here.

COURT

COURT

AUDITS
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FAMILY COURT

MEDIA COVERAGE

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LAW

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LAW
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LAW
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FEDERAL LAW
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LAWSUITS
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FLEC
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FOIA
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FOX

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GARY E.
RANSOM
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GARY
M.
APPELBLATT
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GEORGE

NICHOLSON
(1)
GERALD UELMEN

(1)
GREGORY DWYER
(1)
HAL
BARTHOLOMEW
(1)
HATCHET
DEATH
(1)
HAZART SANKER

(2)
HONEST SERVICES
(4)

INDIGENT
(1)
INFIGHTING
(1)
J.
STRONG
(2)
JACQUELINE
ESTON
(2)
JAIME R.
ROMAN
(10)
JAMES
BROSNAHAN
(2)
JAMES
M. MIZE
(21)
JEFFREY

In November, 2012 Sacramento


Family Court Judge Jaime R.
Romanissued a rubber-stamped,
kickback orderdeclaring a family
court party a vexatious litigant and
ordering him to pay $2,500 to the
opposing attorney, both without
holding the court hearing required by
law. The opposing attorney who
requested the orders is Judge Pro
Tem Charlotte Keeley. The
blatantly illegal orders resulted in
both an unnecessary state court
appeal and federal litigation,
wasting scarce judicial resources
and costing taxpayers significant
sums.Click here for our exclusive
coverage of the case.
Judge Matthew Gary used an
unlawful fee waiver hearing to both
obstruct an appeal of his own orders
and help a client of judgepro tem
attorney Paula Salinger avoid
paying spousal support. Click here
for our investigative report.

EUGENE L. BALONON
(1)

EVIDENTIARY OBJECTIONS

POSNER
(6)

(1)

JERRY

JERRY BROWN
GUTHRIE

(1)

JESSICA HERNANDEZ
(8)

JODY PATEL
(1)
JOE SORGE

(2)
JOHN E.B. MYERS
(1)
JOSEPH

SORGE
(1)
JOYCE KENNARD
(1)
JOYCE TERHAAR
(1)
JRC
(1)

JUDGE
(1)
JUDGE

TEM
(51)

SALARIES
(1)

JUDICIAL

PRO
JUDGE

JUDGES
(10)

CONDUCT HANDBOOK

(1)
JUDICIAL

COUNCIL
(6)

JUDICIAL
MISCONDUCT

(72)
JUDY HOLZER

Divorce attorney Charlotte Keeley (R) and her client Katina Rapton of
Mel Rapton Honda leave a court hearing. Keeley reportedly has billed
Rapton more than $1 million in connection with a child custody dispute.

An unrepresented, disabled 52-year-old single mother was made homeless by an illegal child support
order issued by Judge Matthew Gary for SCBA Family Law Section attorney Tim Zeff, the partner of
temporary judge Scott Buchanan. The rubber-stamped, kickback child supportorder, and other
proceedings in the case were so outrageous that the pro per is now represented on appeal by a team
of attorneys led by legendary trial attorney James Brosnahan of global law firm Morrison & Foerster.
For our exclusive, ongoing reports on the case, click here.
Judge pro tem attorneys Richard Sokol and Elaine Van Beverenhelped conceal judge misconduct
and failed to comply with Canon 3D(1) of the Code of Judicial Ethics when they were eyewitnesses to

HERSHER
(1)
JULIE SETZER

(7)
KICKBACKS
(33)

KIDS FOR CASH


(2)
LAURIE
M. EARL
(10)
LAW LIBRARY
SCHOOL
(5)

(1)
LAW

LAWYER
(1)
LAWYERS
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LEGAL AID ASSOCIATION of


CALIFORNIA
(1)
LEGISLATURE
(1)

LEON KOZIOL
(1)
LINCOLN
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LISTS
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LOLLIE ROBERTS

(5)
LOUIS MAURO
(1)
LUAN
CASE
(4)
MALPRACTICE
(4)

MARTIN HOSHINO
(2)
MARY
MOLINARO
(1)
MATTHEW
HERNANDEZ

(7)

MATTHEW J. GARY

an unlawful contempt of court and resisting arrest incident in Department 121. Both Sokol and Van
Beveren failed to report the misconduct of Judge Matthew Gary as required by state law.Van
Beveren isan officer of the SCBA Family Law Executive Committee.Click here for our exclusive
report...
...Four years later, Sokol and Van Beveren in open court disseminated demonstrably false and
misleading information about the unlawful contempt of court and resisting arrest incident. The
apparent objective of the judge pro tem attorneys was to discredit the victim of Gary's misconduct,
trivialize the incident, and cover up their own misconduct in failing to report the judge. For our follow-up
reports, click here. In 2014, a video of the illegal arrest and assault was leaked by a government
whistleblower. Click here for details.Watch the exclusive Sacramento Family Court News video
below:

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MCGEORGE

SOL
(2)

MEDIA
(1)
MICHAEL T. GARCIA

(1)
MIKE NEWDOW
(5)

NANCY GRACE
(1)
NANCY
PERKOVICH
(4)
NEW YORK

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NEWS EXCLUSIVE

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NEWS YOU CAN USE
TIMES
(2)

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News10
(1)
NO CONTACT
ORDERS
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OPEN
GOVERNMENT
(2)
OPINION

(12)
PARENTAL

PAULA

ALIENATION
(1)

SALINGER

(15)
PERJURY
(1)
PETER
J. McBRIEN
(26)

PHILLIP HERNANDEZ
(3)

PRESIDING JUDGE
(2)
PRO
PERS
(18)
PROTEST
(9)

PSY
(1)
PUBLIC RECORDS
(1)

RACKETEERING
(2)
RAOUL M.
THORBOURNE
(1)
RAPTONKARRES

(12)

RECOGNITION/AWARDS
(4)

REVISIONISM SERIES
(2)

RICHARD SOKOL
(12)

RICO
(2)
ROBERT HIGHT

(14)
ROBERT O'HAIR
(8)

ROBERT SAUNDERS

(22)
ROLAND

In 2008controversial family courtJudge Peter J. McBriendeprived a family court litigant of a fair trial
in a case where the winning party was represented by judge protemattorney Charlotte Keeley. In a
scathing, published opinion, the 3rd District Court of Appealreversed in full and ordered a new
trial. 6th District Court of Appeal Presiding Justice Conrad Rushing characterized McBrien's
conduct in thecase as a "judicial reign of terror."McBrien subsequently was disciplined by the
Commission on Judicial Performance for multiple acts of misconduct in 2009.Click here to read the
court of appeal decision. Click here to read the disciplinary decision issued by the CJP.
Judge pro tem attorneysCamille Hemmer,Robert O'Hair,Jerry GuthrieandRussell Carlsoneach
testified in support ofJudge Peter J. McBrienwhen thecontroversialjudge was facing removal from
the bench by theCommission on Judicial Performancein 2009.As a sworn temporary judges aware
of McBrien's misconduct, each wasrequired byCanon 3D(1)of theCode of Judicial Ethicsto take or
initiate appropriate corrective action to address McBrien's misconduct. Instead, each testified as a
character witnessin supportof the judge. In theCJP'sfinal disciplinary decision allowing McBrien to
remain on the bench, theCJPreferred specifically to the testimony as a mitigating factor that reduced
McBrien's punishment.Click here. Court records indicate thatJudge McBrienhas not disclosed the
potentialconflict of interestto opposing attorneys and litigants in subsequent appearances by the
attorneys in cases before the judge.Click hereforSFCNcoverage of conflict issues.
Judge pro temattorneysTerri Newman,CamilleHemmer,Diane WasznickyandDonna
Reedwereinvolved in a proposedscheme to rig a recall electionofcontroversialJudgePeter J.

ROBIE
(1)
RUSSELL CARLSON

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RUSSELL L. HOM
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RYDER
SALMEN
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S. HINMAN
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SACRAMENTO BEE
(4)

SACRAMENTO
COUNTY
SUPERIOR
COURT
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FAMILY
COURT
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SUPERIOR COURT
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SANCTIONS
(2)
SANTA

CLARA

LAW SCHOOL
(1)
SARAH ANN

STEPHENS
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SATIRE
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SCBA

(22)

SCHWARZENEGGER
(1)
SCOTT
BUCHANAN
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SCOTT
KENDALL
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SCSD
(1)
SEATON
CASE

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SELF-HELP

(1)

SETTLEMENT CONFERENCE

(2)
SFCN READERSHIP DATA

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SHARON A. LUERAS

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SHARON HUDDLE
(6)

SO YOU WANT TO GO TO
LAW

SCHOOL

(4)

SOCIOECONOMIC BIAS

(5)
STATE AUDITOR
(6)

STATE BAR
(5)
STEPHEN
WAGNER

McBrienin 2008. The plan involved helping McBrien defeat the recall by electing him "Judge of the
Year" before the November election.Click herefor theSacramento News and Reviewreport.
Judge pro tem attorney
Robert J. O'Hair testified
as a character witness for
controversial Judge Peter
J. McBrien at the judge's
second CJP disciplinary
proceeding in 2009.Paula
Salinger, an attorney at
O'Hair's firm,Woodruff,
O'Hair Posner &

L. CANDEE
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RON BURGUNDY
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RONALD

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STEUART

STEVE
WHITE
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STEVEN GEVERCER
LEAVENWORTH

(1)
STEVEN

(1)

SPIELBERG
(1)

SUNDAY FUNNIES

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SUNSHINE WEEK
(2)

SUPERIOR COURT
(2)

SUPREME COURT
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TAMI

BOGERT
(1)
TAXPAYERS
(1)
TERRY FRANCKE
(1)

BLIZZARD
(5)

THADD

THADDEUS

STEVENS
(1)
THE RUTTER GROUP

(1)
THOMAS M. CECIL
(4)

Salingerwas later granted


a waiver of the
requirements to become
ajudge pro tem. A family
court watchdog asserts
the waiver was payback for
O'Hair's testimony for
McBrien.Click hereto
read our exclusive
investigative report.

THOMAS WOODRUFF
(5)

TIMOTHY ZEFF
(6)
TOMMY
ULF
LEE
JONES

(1)

CARLSSON
(7)
UNITED
NATIONS
(1)
UPDATE
(2)

VANCE W. RAYE
(3)

VEXATIOUS LITIGANT
(3)

VICTORIA HENLEY
(1)
VICTORY
Court records show that Judge Jaime Roman (L) and Judge Matthew Gary
routinely issued demonstrably illegal court orders for the benefit oflocal
attorneyswho also work as part-time judges in family court. Both judges
have been reassigned out of the family courthouse.

In cases where one party is


unrepresented, family court
clerks and judges permit judge pro tem attorneys to file declarations which violate mandatory state
court rule formatting requirements. The declarations- on blank paper and without line numbers - make
it impossible for the pro per to make lawful written evidentiary objections to false and inadmissible
evidence. Click here for our report documenting multiple state court rule violations in a motion filed
bySCBA Family Law Section officer and temporary judgePaula Salinger. To view the pro per
responsive declaration objecting to the illegal filing click here, and click here for the pro per points &
authorities.
Family court clerks and judges allow judge pro tem attorneys to file a fabricated "Notice of Entry of
Findings and Order After Hearing" in place of a mandatory Judicial Council Notice of Entry of
Judgment FL-190 form. The fake form omits critical appeal rights notifications and other information
included in the mandatory form. Click here for our exclusive report.
Sacramento Family Court temporaryjudgeandfamily law lawyerGary Appelblatt was charged with
13-criminal counts including sexual battery and penetration with a foreign object. The victims were
clients and potential clients of the attorney.The judge pro tem ultimately pleaded no contest to fourof
the original 13-counts, including sexual battery, and was sentenced to 18-months in prison. Court
administrators concealed from the public that Appelblatt held the Office of Temporary Judge.Click
hereto read our report.
Judge pro tem and SCBA Family Law Section attorneyScott Kendall was disbarred from the practice
of law on Nov. 24, 2011. Kendall was disbarred for acts of moral turpitude, advising a client to violate
the law, failing to perform legal services competently, and failing to keep clients informed, including not
telling a client about a wage garnishment order and then withdrawing from the same case without
notifying the client or obtaining court permission. Court administrators concealed from the public that
Kendall held the Office of Temporary Judge.Click here to view our report.
Judge pro tem attorneys Nancy Perkovich and Jacqueline Estonin 2008 helped Donna Gary - the
wife of Judge Matthew J. Gary - promote and market ClientTickler, a client management software
program for attorneys. The judge reportedly has never disclosed the conflict of interest as required by
the Code of Judicial Ethics. Click here for our exclusive report on the controversy.
In February, 2013 the website of family law firm Bartholomew & Wasznicky cut off the public from the
only online access to The Family Law Counselor, a monthly newsletter published by the Sacramento
Bar Association Family Law Section. Lawyers at the firm include judge pro tem attorneys Hal
Bartholomew, Diane Wasznicky and Mary Molinaro. As SFCN has reported, articles in the
newsletter often reflect an unusual, collusive relationship between SCBA attorneys and court
administrators and judges.Click here for our report.

Family court reform


advocates assert that judge
pro tem attorneys obtain
favorable court rulings on
disputed issues at a
statistically improbable
rate. The collusion
between full-time judges
and judge pro tem

OUTREACH

CHURCH
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VL-

CLASS-ACTION
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WALL STREET
JOURNAL

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WASTE

(1)

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WHISTLEBLOWER
PROTECTION
ACT
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WHISTLEBLOWERS
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WHITE HOUSE
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WOODRUFF
O'HAIR POSNER and
SALINGER
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XAPURI B.
VILLAPUDUA

(3)

YOLO

COUNTY
(1)
YOUTUBE
(7)

attorneys constitutes
unfair, fraudulent, and
unlawful business
practices, all of which are
prohibited under California
unfair competition laws,
including Business and
Professions Code
17200, reform advocates
claim.

Sacramento Superior Court Judge James Mizetestified as a characterwitness in


support of controversial Judge Peter McBrien when McBrien was facing removal
from the bench by the state Commission on Judicial Performance.

Unfair competition and the collusion between judges and judge pro tem attorneys ultimately results in
unnecessary appeals burdening the appellate court system, and other, related litigation that wastes
public funds, exposes taxpayers to civil liability, and squanders scarce court resources.
Watchdogs point out that the court operates what amounts to a two-track system of justice. One for
judge pro tem attorneys and another for unrepresented, financially disadvantaged litigants and
"outsider attorneys." Two-track systems are prohibited by the Code of Judicial Ethics, according to
the Commission on Judicial Performance and the California Judicial Conduct Handbook, the gold
standard reference on judge misconduct.Click here for articles about the preferential treatment given
judge pro tem attorneys. Click here for examples of how pro pers are treated.
After representing a client in Sacramento Family Court, San Francisco attorney Stephen R. Gianelli
wrote "this is a 'juice court' in which outside counsel have little chance of prevailing...[the] court has now
abandoned even a pretense of being fair to outside counsel." Click here to read Gianelli's complete,
scathing account.
The Sacramento County Bar Association Family Law Section is led by an "Executive Committee"
("FLEC") of judge pro tem attorneys composed ofChair Russell Carlson, Vice Chair Elaine Van
Beveren, Treasurer Fredrick Cohen and Secretary Paula Salinger. Three of the four have been
involved in legal malpractice litigation, violations of the Code of Judicial Ethics, or as a defendant in
federal civil rights litigation. Click here to read SFCN profiles of the Executive Committee members.
Click here for otherarticles about FLEC.
Judge pro tem attorneys are by law required to take or initiate corrective action if they learn that
another judge has violated any provision of the Code of Judicial Ethics, or if a lawyer has violated any
provision of the California Rules of Professional Conduct. Family court watchdogs assert that
temporary judges regularly observe unethical and unlawful conduct by family court judges and attorneys
but have never taken or initiated appropriate corrective action, a violation of the judge pro tem oath of
office. To view the applicable Code of Judicial Ethics Canons,Click here. For a Judicial Council
directive about the obligation to address judicial misconduct, a critical self-policing component of the
Code of Judicial Ethics, click here.

For information about the role of temporary judges in


family court,click here.For officialSacramento County
Superior Courtinformation about theTemporary Judge
Program click here.

Using public records law, Sacramento Family Court


News obtained the list of private practice attorneys
who also act as judge pro tems in Sacramento Family
Law Court. Each lawyer on the list below is currently a
temporary judge, or was a temporary judge in 2009,
2010, 2011, 2012 or 2013.SFCN cross-checked each
name on the Sacramento Countyjudge pro tem list
withCalifornia State Bar Data. The first name in each
listing is the name that appears on the Sacramento
County judge pro tem list, the second name, the State
Bar Number (SBN), and business address are derived
from the officialState Bar data for each attorney. The