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In re Friedland

Decided: January 27, 1983.

IN THE MATTER OF M. DANIEL FRIEDLAND, AN ATTORNEY AT LAW


On an Order to Show Cause why respondent should not be disbarred or otherwise disciplined.

For suspension -- Chief Justice Wilentz and Justices Clifford, Schreiber, Handler, Pollock, O'Hern and Garibaldi. Opposed -- None.

Per Curiam

[92 NJ Page 107] This disciplinary proceeding against respondent, M. Daniel Friedland, a member of the bars of Indiana and New Jersey, is based on a finding of professional misconduct made against him in the State of Indiana. On March 12, 1979, the Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission instituted disciplinary proceedings against respondent in Indiana charging him with

certain acts of unethical conduct. A hearing officer found the charges to have been sustained. The Indiana Supreme Court adopted those findings and ordered that respondent be disbarred.

The Division of Ethics and Professional Services moved for reciprocal discipline in New Jersey. After reviewing the extensive transcripts of the Indiana proceeding, the Disciplinary Review Board (DRB) adopted the facts as found by the Indiana Supreme Court. As found by DRB, the relevant facts are:

"The respondent's disbarment in Indiana followed lengthy proceedings within that State. A verified three count complaint was filed against the respondent on March 12, 1979 by the Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission. Count 1 of that complaint charged that the respondent had attempted to intimidate and improperly influence Sheldon Breskow, the Executive Secretary of the Indiana Supreme Court's Disciplinary Commission (hereinafter Commission) as well as Commission members in the performance of their duties concerning cases then pending before them in which respondent was involved. Specific acts of alleged intimidation included:

"1. Respondent's statement to Breskow during a conference held on March 20, 1978 at the offices of the Commission, that 'You are a lying bastard, and I am going to get you'.

"2. Respondent's delivery of a letter, which contained references to Breskow's alleged mental illness and was intended to intimidate and ridicule, to Breskow on April 5, 1978. That letter contained the following handwritten notation: 'Shel,

This letter will be sent to 1,000 selected lawyers on Monday if all grievances against me aren't dropped -- Buchanan is next.'

"Thereafter, on April 11, 1978, respondent left a telephone message with a Commission employee advising that Breskow had 'an extra day'. On April 13, 1978, respondent mailed to a number of Indianapolis attorneys a revised letter which did not contain any reference to Breskow's alleged mental illness, but did charge Breskow with conducting a personal vendetta against him.

"Count II of the complaint charged respondent with further attempting to intimidate and improperly influence the Honorable

Paul H. Buchanan, Jr., a judge of the Indiana Court of Appeals and member of the Commission, together with Breskow and other Commission staff. The respondent's conduct occurred during the same time periods as the incidents discussed in Count I: on March 22, 1978, after appearing without an appointment and being denied a conference with Judge Buchanan, respondent stated to the judge in an angry manner, 'All right, you are on my list'; additionally, respondent wrote on the letter sent to Breskow on April 5 that 'Buchanan is next'. Several weeks later, respondent delivered to Commission offices a draft complaint signed by respondent as attorney for Arthur Anderson naming Buchanan as defendant and ...


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