May 5, 2005
IN RE STUART E. HENDIN, ESQ., RESPONDENT.
A MEMBER OF THE BAR OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA COURT OF APPEALS (BAR REGISTRATION NO. 424723)
Before Ruiz and Washington, Associate Judges, and Steadman, Senior Judge.
On Report and Recommendation of the Board on Professional Responsibility (BDN 10-02)
Submitted April 12, 2005
This is a matter of reciprocal discipline based on the June 12, 2002, order of the New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Third Judicial Department, which disbarred the respondent from practice as an attorney in the state of New York. The Board on Professional Responsibility recommends identical discipline, with the effective date of disbarrment to run, nunc pro tunc, from the time he filed a complete § 14 (g) affidavit. Neither respondent nor Bar Counsel has filed an exception to the Board's recommendation. Therefore, we adopt the recommendation of the Board. See D.C. Bar R. X, § 9 (g).
This matter grows out of the respondent's professional misconduct committed in the course of his legal practice in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, between February 1, 1998 and February 28, 2000. At that time, the respondent misappropriated approximately $108,000 from various clients. The respondent, who self-reported his misconduct to the Law Society of Upper Canada, cooperated fully with its investigator, and made full restitution of the misappropriated funds. He also was found to have been suffering from severe depression at the time. As a result, the Law Society, in its decision and order of September 18, 2001, permitted the respondent to resign, prohibiting him from thenceforth practicing law in that jurisdiction.
As a result of this misconduct and the disciplinary action in Canada (and apparently not due to any other misconduct in New York or elswhere), the New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Third Judicial Department issued an order dated June 12, 2002, in which it disbarred the respondent "effective immediately." According to the Board, the respondent never notified Bar Counsel of either the action taken against him in Canada or of his disbarrment in New York, as he was required to do.*fn1 Instead, Bar Counsel forwarded to this court a certified copy of the New York order of disbarrment, and we suspended respondent on July 15, 2002. The Board on Professional Responsibility also sent a letter to the respondent, dated July 2, 2002, informing him that he should "file an affidavit with the Board Office which meets the criteria of In re Goldberg, 460 A.2d 982 (D.C. 1983)," stating whether he had practiced law in the District since the effective date of his disbarrment in New York and whether he intended to continue to practice in the District during the remainder of that sanction. The respondent filed such an affidavit on July 25, 2002, stating that he had not practiced in the District of Columbia since February 1, 2000. He also filed a Rule XI, § 14 (g) affidavit on that date, which listed only his state bar admissions.
In its Report, the Board recommended that the respondent's disbarrment should be effective from July 25, 2002, the date on which he filed his initial Rule XI, § 14 (g) affidavit, provided that he supplement it within ten days of the Board's Report, which was dated October 20, 2004, with an affidavit listing the federal jurisdictions to which he has been admitted to practice. Respondent filed a "Motion for Extension of Time to File Amended Affidavit," which was granted by the court on November 15, 2004.*fn2 Respondent filed the amended § 14 (g) affidavit on November 29, 2004.*fn3
Accordingly, it is
ORDERED, that Stuart E. Hendin is disbarred from the practice of law in the District of Columbia effective July 25, 2002.