disciplinary matter arises from formal charges filed by the
Office of Disciplinary Counsel ("ODC") against
respondent, Edward Bissau Mendy, a disbarred attorney.
we address the current charges, we find it helpful to review
respondent's prior disciplinary history. Respondent was
admitted to the practice of law in Louisiana in 1993. In
2001, we suspended respondent from the practice of law for
six months, followed by six months of probation, for failing
to competently represent clients, neglecting and failing to
expedite legal matters, failing to communicate with clients,
and failing to cooperate in the disciplinary proceedings.
In re: Mendy, 01-1462 (La. 8/31/01), 793 So.2d 1225
2012, we suspended respondent from the practice of law for
three years for neglecting legal matters, failing to
communicate with clients, failing to account for or refund
unearned fees, and failing to return client files. In re:
Mendy, 11-2275 (La. 2/17/12), 81 So.3d 650
2016, we disbarred respondent for neglecting legal matters,
failing to refund unearned fees, and failing to cooperate in
the disciplinary proceedings. In re Mendy, 16-0456
(La. 10/19/16), 217 So.3d 260 ("Mendy
this backdrop, we now turn to a consideration of the
misconduct at issue in the instant proceeding.
August 2009, Tyler Malejko retained respondent to prepare a
patent application, to represent him as needed to perfect his
patent, and to explore various beneficial strategies related
to the patent. Under the terms of their written agreement,
Mr. Malejko agreed to pay respondent a $7, 000 flat fee,
regardless of the actual time expended on the case, for up to
thirty-five hours of legal services. In addition to that
amount, Mr. Malejko agreed to pay legal fees at the rate of
$250 per hour, up to a maximum additional fee of $5, 500. Mr.
Malejko paid respondent $7, 000 towards the $12, 500 fee. Mr.
Malejko produced a Chase Bank receipt reflecting the $7, 000
deposit into respondent's checking account. By e-mail
dated January 7, 2010, respondent acknowledged receiving the
payment. However, there is no evidence that respondent took
any action in the matter.
February 2015, Mr. Malejko filed a complaint against
respondent with the ODC. Respondent failed to respond to the
February 2016, the ODC filed formal charges against
respondent, alleging that his conduct violated the following
provisions of the Rules of Professional Conduct: Rules 1.1(c)
(a lawyer is required to comply with all of the requirements
of the Supreme Court's rules regarding annual
registration), 1.3 (a lawyer shall act with reasonable
diligence and promptness in representing a client), 1.4(a)
(failure to communicate with a client), 1.5(a) (charging an
unreasonable fee), 1.5(f)(5) (failure to refund an unearned
fee), 1.15(a) (safekeeping property of clients or third
persons), 8.1(c) (failure to cooperate with the ODC in its
investigation), 8.4(a) (violation of the Rules of
Professional Conduct), and 8.4(c) (engaging in conduct
involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation).
failed to answer the formal charges. Accordingly, the factual
allegations contained therein were deemed admitted and proven
by clear and convincing evidence pursuant to Supreme Court
Rule XIX, § 11(E)(3). No formal hearing was held, but
the parties were given an opportunity to file with the
hearing committee written arguments and documentary ...