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In re Gilmore

Supreme Court of Louisiana

February 18, 2019

IN RE: ARTHUR GILMORE, JR.

          ON APPLICATION FOR READMISSION

          PER CURIAM

         This proceeding arises out of an application for readmission to the practice of law filed by petitioner, Arthur Gilmore, Jr., a disbarred attorney.

         UNDERLYING FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

         In 2013, petitioner was convicted of a federal racketeering charge. The conviction stemmed from petitioner's acceptance of bribes in exchange for taking favorable actions on behalf of individuals and organizations having business before the Monroe City Council, of which he was an elected member.

         Following petitioner's conviction, we placed him on interim suspension. In re: Gilmore, 13-1284 (La. 6/19/13), 117 So.3d 500.[1] On September 26, 2013, petitioner was sentenced to serve twenty-four months in federal prison. This sentence was below the sentencing guidelines range, and the judge gave the following reasons for the downward departure:

In this case, the Government's main witness engaged in an ongoing program of planned enticement to provoke [petitioner] into agreeing to bribes in exchange for perceived favors from [petitioner's] position with the Monroe City Council. Because of that, the Guidelines, in my opinion, may overstate the relative seriousness of [petitioner's] actions and the application of an equitable sentence.
So I find there exists a mitigating circumstance of a kind not adequately taken into consideration by the Guidelines and that in order to advance the objective set forth under the Guidelines, the sentence will be different from that described.

         On November 13, 2014, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed petitioner's racketeering conviction. United States v. Gilmore, No. 13-31064 (5th Cir. 2014) (not designated for publication).

         In July 2015, the Office of Disciplinary Counsel ("ODC") filed formal charges against petitioner based on his conviction of a crime. After considering the formal charges, we disbarred petitioner, retroactive to June 9, 2013, the date of his most recent interim suspension; additionally, we gave petitioner credit for the time he served on interim suspension during the period of June 19, 2011 to September 21, 2011 and during the period of May 2, 2012 to April 3, 2013. In re: Gilmore, 16-0967 (La. 10/19/16), 218 So.3d 100.

         On January 2, 2018, petitioner filed the instant application for readmission to the practice of law in Louisiana, asserting that he has complied with the readmission criteria set forth in Supreme Court Rule XIX, § 24(E). On April 12, 2018, the ODC filed its objection to petitioner's application for readmission. The matter was then referred for a formal hearing before a hearing committee.

         Following the hearing, the hearing committee recommended that petitioner be readmitted to the practice of law, subject to certain conditions. Both petitioner and the ODC objected to the committee's recommendation. Therefore, pursuant to Supreme Court Rule XIX, § 24(H)(2), the matter was reviewed by the disciplinary board. After review, the board recommended petitioner be readmitted to the practice of law, subject to a three-year period of probation with certain conditions. Three board members dissented, recommending readmission be denied. The ODC objected to the board's recommendation.

         DISCUSSION

         After considering the record in its entirety, we find petitioner has met his burden of proving that he is entitled to be readmitted to the practice of law on a conditional basis. Accordingly, we will order that petitioner be readmitted to the practice of law, ...


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