Vol. 35, No. 3
From the Courts
Colorado Disciplinary Cases
Summaries of Disciplinary Opinions
The summaries for the Presiding Disciplinary Judge and Hearing Board are prepared by the Office of the Presiding Disciplinary Judge. The summaries of the decisions of the Presiding Disciplinary Judge are provided as a service by the Colorado Bar Association and are not the official language of the Decisions. The Colorado Bar Association cannot guarantee the accuracy or completeness of the summaries.
Full copies of the Decisions generally follow the summaries pages. The summaries and full-text Decisions also are accessible from the CBA website: http://www.cobar.org (click on The Colorado Lawyer tab, then the appropriate issue). Decisions, including Exhibits, Complaints, and Amended Complaints and summaries, also are available at the Office of Presiding Disciplinary Judge website: http://www.coloradosupremecourt.com/PDJ/pdj.htm, as well as on LexisNexis® at http://www.lexis.com/research, by clicking on States Legal-U.S./Colorado/Cases/CO Supreme Court Disciplinary Opinions from 1999.
Summaries of Decisions Regarding Conditional Admission of Misconduct
Issued by the Presiding Disciplinary Judge
(Through December 2005)
[The Presiding Disciplinary Judge’s approval of Conditional Admissions of Misconduct does not result in a written Opinion but only a brief Order, which does not constitute precedent. Conditional Admissions of Misconduct are public record and are available for review at the Office of the Presiding Disciplinary Judge, 1560 Broadway, Denver, CO 80202; (303) 866-6658; http://www.coloradosupremecourt.com/PJD/pdj.htm.
People v. Agresti, No. 05PDJ054, 12/22/2005. Attorney Suspended.
The Presiding Disciplinary Judge held a hearing, subsequently approved a Conditional Admission of Misconduct submitted by the parties, and suspended respondent Thomas J. Agresti, attorney registration number 25077, from the practice of law for a period of one year and one day. Suspension is effective January 22, 2006. The Presiding Disciplinary Judge also ordered respondent to pay restitution to his former client and the costs incurred in conjunction with these proceedings.
Respondent recklessly exercised unauthorized dominion and control over his client’s funds, without earning the funds, but did not scheme to defraud his client. As a result of respondent’s misconduct, his client suffered damages in the amount of $27,500. Respondent’s conduct constituted grounds for the imposition of discipline pursuant to C.R.C.P. 251.5. Respondent’s conduct violated Colo. RPC 1.5(a); Colo. RPC 1.5(b); Colo. RPC 1.15(a), (c), (g) and (h); Colo. RPC 1.7(b); and Colo. RPC 8.4(c).
People v. Vandenberge, No. 05PDJ088, 01/03/2006. Attorney Disbarred.
The Presiding Disciplinary Judge approved a Conditional Admission of Misconduct submitted by the parties and disbarred respondent Keith J. Vandenberge, attorney registration number 06167, from the practice of law, effective February 3, 2006. The Presiding Disciplinary Judge also ordered respondent to pay the costs incurred in conjunction with these proceedings.
Respondent knowingly converted client funds when he delayed disbursements of client funds to six clients and used the funds for personal purposes, absent the clients’ authorization. Respondent ultimately repaid his clients; nevertheless, his conduct constituted grounds for the imposition of discipline pursuant to C.R.C.P. 251.5 and resulted in a violation of Colo. RPC 8.4(c).
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