MAGAZINE
California Lawyer

DISBARMENT

Daniel S. Brown, State Bar #158025, Danville (April 14, 2011). Brown, 48, was disbarred for engaging in the unauthorized practice of law, failing to comply with rule 9.20 of the Rules of Court, and engaging in acts of moral turpitude, dishonesty, or corruption.

In May 2009 Brown was served with a notice of disciplinary charges. He failed to respond and was placed on inactive status. In June 2009 he appeared in court, representing two clients in a civil case. Opposing counsel informed the court that Brown was on suspended status. Brown claimed ignorance of the effective date of the suspension.

In February 2010 he was suspended for 90 days and until the State Bar Court terminated the suspension. Brown was disciplined after failing to comply with conditions to a 2008 public reproval, which required him to notify clients and opposing counsel of his suspension within 30 days and to file an affidavit of compliance within 40 days. He failed to file the affidavit and provided no explanation to the State Bar.

In aggravation, Brown had a record of prior discipline, the underlying matter. The current misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing. Also, he failed to participate in the State Bar proceedings prior to entry of his default.

The order took effect May 14, 2011

Stephen L. Burns, State Bar #113371, Burbank (April 13, 2011). Burns, 60, was disbarred for attorney misconduct in five matters by failing to promptly pay out funds, failing to comply with a court order, failing to maintain client funds in trust, misappropriating client funds, failing to competently perform legal services, failing to inform a client about significant developments in the client’s case, failing to return unearned fees, and engaging in acts of moral turpitude, dishonesty, or corruption. Burns was ordered to make restitution of $19,773 to two clients.

In aggravation, Burns had a record of prior discipline. In the current matter, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing that caused harm to clients and was surrounded by bad faith, dishonesty, concealment, and overreaching. He also demonstrated indifference toward rectification of or atonement for the consequences of his misconduct.

The order took effect May 13, 2011

Joe M. Capps, State Bar #210998, West Newton, MA (April 27, 2011). Capps, 49, received a summary disbarment following his conviction for violating Mass. General Code 26, § 54, attempted arson of a dwelling, a felony involving moral turpitude.

In April 2010 Capps was placed on interim suspension for the General Code violation. His conviction is now final, and the Review Department concluded that his criminal violation met the criteria for summary disbarment.

The order took effect May 27, 2011

Gregory Chandler, State Bar #158260, Travis Air Force Base (April 27, 2011). Chandler, 53, was disbarred for failing to comply with rule 9.20 of the Rules of Court.

In March 2010 Chandler was suspended for two years and until he made restitution of $8,643 to a client, until the State Bar Court terminated the suspension, and until he provided proof of his rehabilitation, fitness to practice, and learning and ability in the law. Conditions to the discipline required Chandler to notify clients and opposing counsel of his suspension within 30 days and to file an affidavit of compliance within 40 days. He failed to file the affidavit and provided no explanation to the State Bar.

In aggravation, Chandler had a record of prior discipline, the underlying matter. He failed to cooperate with the State Bar during its investigation and proceedings, and he demonstrated indifference toward rectification of or atonement for the consequences of his misconduct.

The order took effect May 27, 2011

David G. Fox, State Bar #61158, Sacramento (April 27, 2011). Fox, 62, was disbarred for failing to comply with rule 9.20 of the Rules of Court.

In April 2010 Fox was suspended for one year for failing to comply with conditions to a May 2008 order of probation for failing to maintain a current address with the State Bar and failing to cooperate with a State Bar investigation. Conditions to the 2010 discipline required Fox to notify clients and opposing counsel of his suspension within 30 days and to file an affidavit of compliance within 40 days. He failed to file the affidavit and provided no explanation to the State Bar.

In aggravation, Fox had a record of prior discipline, the underlying matters, and he demonstrated indifference toward rectification of or atonement for the consequences of his misconduct. Also, he failed to cooperate with the State Bar prior to entry of his default.

The order took effect May 27, 2011

Brian I. Glicker, State Bar #165866, Sherman Oaks (April 21, 2011). Glicker, 52, was disbarred for attorney misconduct in two matters by making intentional misrepresentations to a client, misappropriating client funds, failing to provide an accounting of client funds, failing to cooperate with two State Bar investigations, and engaging in acts of moral turpitude, dishonesty, or corruption. He was also ordered to make restitution of $185,000 to a client’s family trust and $3,880 to a second client.

In aggravation, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing that caused significant harm to clients, and he demonstrated indifference toward rectification of or atonement for the consequences of his misconduct. The State Bar Court also found that he remained defiant and lacked insight into his wrongdoing. In mitigation, Glicker had no record of prior discipline since being admitted to the bar in 1993. Also, during the period of misconduct, he experienced marital stress and financial problems.

The order took effect May 21, 2011

Steve S. Kwon, State Bar #222338, Diamond Bar (April 13, 2011). Kwon, 47, was disbarred for failing to comply with rule 9.20 of the Rules of Court.

In May 2010 Kwon’s previous order of probation was revoked and a new order issued in which he was suspended for one year and placed on two years of probation for failing to comply with conditions to a previous order of discipline. Conditions to the 2010 discipline required Kwon to notify clients and opposing counsel of his suspension within 30 days and to file an affidavit of compliance within 40 days. He failed to file the affidavit and provided no explanation to the State Bar.

In aggravation, Kwon had a record of prior discipline. In mitigation, he cooperated with the State Bar during its investigation and proceedings. Also, he demonstrated remorse by contacting the Office of Probation prior to the disciplinary proceedings.

The order took effect May 13, 2011

Ricardo L. Mendoza, State Bar #129356, Oxnard (April 27, 2011). Mendoza, 53, was disbarred after he was found culpable of 19 counts of misconduct in six client matters by failing to competently perform legal services, failing to promptly respond to client inquiries, failing to keep clients informed about significant developments in their cases, failing to maintain client funds in trust, misappropriating client funds, failing to comply with a court order, failing to cooperate with five State Bar investigations, failing to maintain a current address with the State Bar, and engaging in acts of moral turpitude, dishonesty, or corruption.

In aggravation, Mendoza had a record of prior discipline. In the current matter, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing that caused harm to Mendoza’s clients. In mitigation, he cooperated with the State Bar by entering into a comprehensive stipulation.

The order took effect May 27, 2011

Colleen M. Quinn, State Bar #87608, San Jose (April 21, 2011). Quinn, 58, was disbarred for failing to comply with rule 9.20 of the Rules of Court.

In May 2010 Quinn was suspended for three years and placed on five years of probation after being found culpable in ten matters by violating Health and Safety Code § 11173(a), attempting to obtain and obtaining a controlled substance, two felony counts and three misdemeanor counts; violating Vehicle Code § 23152(a), driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, a misdemeanor; violating Vehicle Code § 14601, driving with a suspended license; failing to obtain the informed written consent of a client to represent multiple parties in the same matter in which there was a potential conflict of interest; and failing to competently perform legal services. Conditions to the discipline required Quinn to notify clients and opposing counsel of her suspension within 30 days and to file an affidavit of compliance within 40 days. She failed to file the affidavit and provided no explanation to the State Bar. In addition, she filed her quarterly probation report for April 2010 late and failed to timely file drug-screening reports from March through June 2010.

In aggravation, Quinn had a record of prior discipline, the underlying matter. The misconduct caused significant harm to the administration of justice. She demonstrated indifference toward rectification of or atonement for the consequences of her misconduct, and she failed to participate in the State Bar proceedings prior to entry of her default.

The order took effect May 21, 2011

SUSPENSION

Jon M. Alexander, State Bar #129207, Crescent City (April 21, 2011). Alexander, 62, was suspended for 60 days and placed on three years of probation after being found culpable of attorney misconduct in four matters by failing to competently perform legal services, failing to respond to client inquiries, failing to keep clients informed about significant developments in their cases, engaging in the unauthorized practice of law, failing to promptly release a client’s file, failing to promptly return unearned fees, and improperly communicating with a judge.

In aggravation, Alexander had a record of prior discipline. In mitigation, he cooperated with the State Bar during its investigation and proceedings. Also, during the period of misconduct, he experienced family and financial problems and suffered a broken neck as the result of a violent crime. He has agreed with the State Bar to continue making restitution payments.

The order took effect May 21, 2011

Kevin M. Bareilles, State Bar #44816, Eureka (March 18, 2011). Bareilles, 69, was suspended for one year and placed on five years of probation for violating Government Code § 66499.30(b), making an unlawful land sales transaction, a felony; and failing to comply with rule 9.20 of the Rules of Court. He was given credit for the period of his interim suspension, which began on July 23, 2010. He remains suspended until he makes restitution to all entities and individuals as ordered by the superior court.

In 1992 Bareilles owned land in Humboldt County. He illegally subdivided and sold the property until he was criminally charged in 2008. In July 2010 the Review Department placed him on interim suspension for the Government Code violation and ordered him to notify clients and opposing counsel of his suspension within 30 days and to file an affidavit of compliance within 40 days. Bareilles timely filed the affidavit, but it was rejected by the Probation Department; he resubmitted the corrected affidavit seven days late.

In aggravation, Bareilles had a record of prior discipline. In mitigation, he cooperated with the State Bar during its investigation and proceedings.

The order took effect April 17, 2011

Jennifer F. Blackburn, State Bar #214781, Keaau, HI (March 24, 2011). Blackburn, 37, was suspended for 30 days and placed on two years of probation for failing to comply with conditions to a previous order of discipline.

In March 2008 Blackburn was placed on two years of probation for failing to competently perform legal services, failing to respond to reasonable client inquiries, failing to advise a client of her new law office address, and failing to keep clients reasonably informed about significant developments in their cases. Blackburn failed to comply with conditions to the discipline by failing to contact the Office of Probation within the prescribed time and failing to timely submit quarterly probation reports for the first two quarters of 2009 and the first two quarters of 2010.

In mitigation, Blackburn experienced emotional difficulties during the time of her misconduct.

The order took effect April 23, 2011

Gregory A. Brubaker, State Bar #163916, San Francisco (March 29, 2011). Brubaker, 44, was suspended for four years and placed on five years of probation for failing to timely comply with rule 9.20 of the Rules of Court.

In January 2010 Brubaker was suspended for two years and until the State Bar Court terminated the suspension and until he provided proof of his rehabilitation, fitness to practice, and learning and ability in the law. He was suspended for failing to comply with conditions to a previous order of discipline and engaging in acts of moral turpitude, dishonesty, or corruption. Conditions to the discipline required him to notify clients and opposing counsel of his suspension within 30 days and to file an affidavit of compliance within 40 days, but he failed to timely file the affidavit.

In aggravation, Brubaker had a record of prior discipline. In mitigation, Brubaker cooperated with the State Bar during its investigation and proceedings and demonstrated remorse for his misconduct. Once he learned of his noncompliance to disciplinary conditions, he took steps to correct the error.

The order took effect April 29, 2011

Edward M. Chavez, State Bar #146133, Anaheim (January 19, 2011). Chavez, 48, was suspended for one year and placed on three years of probation for failing to maintain client funds in trust, misappropriating funds, failing to competently perform legal services, failing to promptly respond to client inquiries, and engaging in acts of moral turpitude, dishonesty, or corruption.

In aggravation, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing. In mitigation, Chavez had no record of prior discipline since being admitted to the bar in 1990. Also, during the period of misconduct, he experienced family and financial problems.

The order took effect February 18, 2011

Daniel E. Tuau-Fu Chien, State Bar #190061, Newport Beach (March 18, 2011). Chien, 41, was suspended for two years and placed on three years of probation for failing to maintain client funds in trust and violating Insurance Code § 750(a), capping, a misdemeanor. He remains suspended until he provides proof of his rehabilitation, fitness to practice, and learning and ability in the law.

In May 2004 Chien represented two clients in individual personal injury matters. He successfully settled both cases and deposited the settlement funds into his client trust account. Chien failed to adequately supervise an employee, who mishandled the funds, so that Chien could not disburse them to the clients.

In October and November 2010 he made full restitution to both clients by paying them a total of $7,756.

In a second matter, in July 2009 Chien was convicted of capping, an Insurance Code violation. At the time, Chien operated two law offices. He failed to adequately supervise one of his employees, who paid a third person to make referrals to Chien’s law firm.

In aggravation, Chien had a record of prior discipline. In mitigation, Chien cooperated with the State Bar during its investigation and proceedings.

The order took effect April 17, 2011

Mitchell Chyette, State Bar #113087, Berkeley (March 18, 2011). Chyette, 56, was suspended for two years and placed on four years of probation for failing to maintain client funds in trust, misappropriating client funds totaling $89,374 from 15 clients, issuing client trust account checks to pay personal and nonclient expenses, issuing a client trust account check against insufficient funds, aiding others to engage in the unauthorized practice of law, employing a resigned attorney and failing to notify the State Bar about hiring that attorney, making false statements in response to a State Bar investigation, and engaging in acts of moral turpitude, dishonesty, or corruption.

In aggravation, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing that were surrounded by bad faith, dishonesty, and concealment. Also, Chyette failed to cooperate with the State Bar during its investigation and proceedings. In mitigation, Chyette had no record of prior discipline since being admitted to the bar in 1984.

The order took effect April 17, 2011

Diddo R. Clark, State Bar #79876, Lafayette (April 14, 2011). Clark, 61, was suspended for 30 days and placed on three years of probation for seeking to mislead a court or judicial officer by false statement of fact and engaging in acts of moral turpitude, dishonesty, or corruption.

In 2005 Clark filed a civil complaint against her mother, and in 2007 she filed a motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict that the court had granted in part. Clark’s mother then filed an appeal. In October 2008 Clark filed a request for an extension of time to file a brief. In November and December 2008 she filed other requests for an extension of time. Clark failed to timely file her brief, and the appellate court rejected her late filing.

In January 2009 Clark wrote to the clerk of the court, explaining that she had mailed the brief by priority mail. The clerk left a telephone message telling Clark that the court did not receive her brief. Two days later, Clark wrote to the clerk stating that she lied about having mailed the brief.

In mitigation, Clark had no record of prior discipline since being admitted to the bar in 1978. Also, she cooperated with the State Bar during its proceedings.

The order took effect May 14, 2011

Mark T. Clausen, State Bar #196721, Santa Rosa (April 14, 2011). Clausen, 42, was suspended for 30 days and placed on two years of probation for engaging in the unauthorized practice of law.

In November 2008 Clausen was suspended for 30 days and placed on two years of probation for practicing law while on suspension for failing to pay State Bar dues. One of the conditions to the discipline required that Clausen pay costs to the State Bar, which he did in February 2009. He was then reinstated to active status. The current discipline was the result of his unauthorized practice of law in December 2008 and January 2009.

In aggravation, Clausen had a record of prior discipline, the underlying matter. In mitigation, he cooperated with the State Bar by entering into an early settlement and also demonstrated remorse for his misconduct.

The order took effect May 14, 2011

Marc S. Colen, State Bar #108275, Agoura Hills (April 14, 2011). Colen, 61, was suspended for 30 days and placed on three years of probation for breaching his duty of confidentiality, requiring a client to withdraw his State Bar complaint as a condition to settling a dispute with the client, and agreeing to represent more than one client in a matter in which there was a potential conflict of interest. In mitigation, Colen had no record of prior discipline since being admitted to the bar in 1983. He cooperated with the State Bar during its investigation and proceedings and successfully completed the State Bar Alternative Discipline Program.

The order took effect May 14, 2011

Jane A. Conners, State Bar #226057, San Diego (April 13, 2011). Conners, 51, was suspended for two years and placed on three years probation for failing to maintain client funds in trust, misappropriating $13,604 in client funds, failing to promptly pay funds to a client, and engaging in acts of moral turpitude, dishonesty, or corruption. Conners will remain suspended until she provides proof of her rehabilitation, fitness to practice, and learning and ability in the law.

In aggravation, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing that caused harm to a client. In mitigation, during the period of misconduct, Conners experienced severe family problems. Also, Conners cooperated with the State Bar by entering into a stipulation.

The order took effect May 13, 2011

Leonie E. Davis, State Bar #224575, El Dorado Hills (January 28, 2011). Davis, 48, was suspended for one year and placed on three years of probation for failing to comply with conditions to a previous order of discipline.

In July 2007 Davis was suspended for 60 days and placed on two years of probation for improperly withdrawing from representation, failing to provide an accounting, failing to return unearned fees, failing to respond to client inquiries, failing to keep a client reasonably informed about significant developments in the client’s case, and failing to employ means consistent with the truth. Davis failed to comply with conditions to the discipline by failing to timely file probation reports, failing to timely contact her probation monitor, and failing to maintain a current address with the State Bar.

In aggravation, Davis had a record of prior discipline, the underlying matter. In mitigation, she cooperated with the State Bar during its investigation and proceedings.

The order took effect February 27, 2011

Nolan A. DelCampo, State Bar #152113, Fair Oaks (February 1, 2011). DelCampo, 49, was suspended for 60 days and placed on two years of probation for failing to comply with conditions to a previous order of discipline.

In July 2009 DelCampo was suspended for 120 days and placed on two years of probation for failing to timely comply with conditions to a previous order of suspension. He failed to comply with the imposed conditions by failing to timely submit quarterly probation reports and failing to submit proof of attending State Bar ethics school.

In aggravation, DelCampo had a record of prior discipline.

In the current matter, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing. In mitigation, during the period of misconduct, DelCampo experienced emotional difficulties, which included the death of family members and friends.

The order took effect March 3, 2011

John L. DiFiore, State Bar #136971, Fountain Valley (March 24, 2011). DiFiore, 48, was suspended for two years and placed on three years of probation for attorney misconduct in eight matters by violating Vehicle Code § 23152(a), driving under the influence of alcohol; § 23152(b), driving with a blood-alcohol level greater than .08 percent; failing to stop after a traffic accident; driving with a suspended license; and failing to maintain client funds in trust.

In aggravation, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing that demonstrated disregard for the law and public safety. In mitigation, DiFiore had no record of prior discipline since being admitted to the bar in 1988. He cooperated with the State Bar during its investigation and proceedings. Also, prior to the misconduct, DiFiore was laid off after working 13 years for a law firm.

The order took effect April 23, 2011

Brian V. Donnelly, State Bar #162987, San Francisco (March 24, 2011). Donnelly, 43, was suspended for six months and placed on three years of probation for attorney misconduct in two client matters by failing to competently perform legal services, failing to respond to client inquiries, failing to return a client’s file, improperly withdrawing from representation, failing to obey a court order, failing to communicate a settlement offer to a client, and failing to cooperate with two State Bar investigations.

In aggravation, Donnelly had a record of prior discipline. In the current matter, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing that caused significant harm to Donnelly’s clients. He demonstrated indifference toward rectification of or atonement for the consequences of his misconduct. Also, he failed to file a response to the State Bar Notice of Disciplinary charges. In mitigation, Donnelly cooperated with the State Bar by entering into a stipulation. Also, he suffered physical and emotional difficulties as the result of a motor vehicle accident in 2006.

The order took effect April 23, 2011

Clifford A. Dover, State Bar #169838, San Diego (February 18, 2011). Dover, 54, was suspended for one year and placed on three years of probation for failing to maintain client funds in trust and engaging in acts of moral turpitude, dishonesty, or corruption.

In 2002 Dover was hired as a contract attorney for a housing foundation. In 2004 he filed a discrimination case on behalf of the foundation, a client, and the client’s two children.

In February 2006, on the defendant’s motion, the matter was dismissed. Dover filed an appeal the next month, and in October 2006 he settled the case for $25,000 without the authority or knowledge of the housing foundation. He voluntarily dismissed the appeal without his employer’s knowledge and consent. At about the same time, he misappropriated $7,000 in client funds from the trust account without the knowledge and consent of his employer.

Dover continued making misrepresentations about the client’s appeal to his employer through June 2007, even though his employer had terminated his contract in February 2007.

In January 2008 Dover’s employer filed a complaint against him with the State Bar. Thereafter, Dover returned $7,500 to the housing foundation.

In mitigation, Dover had no record of prior discipline since being admitted to the bar in 1993. During the period of misconduct, he suffered from stress and depression, and he continues to receive treatment for depression.

The order took effect March 20, 2011

Eric A. Forstrom, State Bar #237695, Huntington Beach (February 18, 2011). Forstrom, 35, was suspended for one year and placed on two years of probation following his conviction for violating Penal Code § 550(b)(1), insurance fraud, a misdemeanor; and engaging in acts of moral turpitude, dishonesty, or corruption.

In March 2008 Forstrom was involved in an automobile collision in the early hours of the morning. After talking to the driver and passenger of the other vehicle, Forstrom walked away from the scene, abandoning his car. The following day he told the police that his car was stolen, and he filed a written statement with the police department. The same day, he filed a claim with his insurance company stating that his car was stolen.

In May 2008 Forstrom’s attorney wrote to the insurance company requesting withdrawal of the claim and agreed to hold the insurance company harmless. In September 2008 the district attorney filed a two-count criminal complaint against Forstrom, and in April 2009 the complaint was amended to include a third count. Forstrom pleaded guilty to submitting a false or misleading claim, a misdemeanor. He was then ordered to enroll in a drunk-driver program and to complete 250 hours of community service; the remaining counts were dismissed.

In May 2009 he self-reported his conviction to the State Bar, and that December he completed the drunk-driver program and his community service work.

In aggravation, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing. In mitigation, Forstrom had no record of prior discipline since being admitted to the bar in 1995. He also cooperated with the State Bar by entering into a stipulation as to facts, conclusions of law, and discipline to be imposed.

The order took effect March 20, 2011

Bradley L. Jensen, State Bar #182272, Aliso Viejo (April 14, 2011). Jensen, 45, was suspended for 30 days and placed on two years of probation for attorney misconduct by presenting an unwarranted defense under existing law, threatening criminal action to gain an advantage in a civil matter, and engaging in acts of moral turpitude, dishonesty, or corruption.

In March 2002 Jensen substituted into a state court case to prepare an appellant’s opening brief, which he filed in October 2002. The respondent argued that Jensen’s opening brief was frivolous, and the respondent sought monetary sanctions against Jensen and his corporate client. That December the previous attorney filed a motion with the court requesting that he be allowed to substitute back into the case, and the court granted the motion. The attorney filed a reply brief to Jensen’s opening brief, essentially making the same or similar arguments as Jensen.

In March 2003 the court issued an order to show cause (OSC) regarding sanctions against Jensen, the previous attorney, and the corporate client. In March 2004 the court of appeal held that the appeal was frivolous and without merit, and was made for the purpose of delay. The court also found that other issues raised by the appeal were untenable and concluded there was no intentional suppression of evidence by the plaintiff in the original action. In other aspects of the appeal, the court held that Jensen and the previous attorney were both equally culpable. The court ordered sanctions to be paid jointly and severally in the amount of $37,765 to the plaintiff and $11,816 to the court of appeal. The court also ordered the previous attorney to pay $20,000 to the state’s general fund and the appellant to pay $244,275 to the state’s general fund. In July 2004 Jensen paid $6,750 to the plaintiff and $5,908 to the court of appeal. That same month the court issued a remittitur to its OSC. Jensen failed to pay the balance of the sanctions to the plaintiff and to the Court of Appeal.

In August 2005 Jensen produced financial records to the court of appeal to support his motion to have the amount of sanctions reduced to the amounts already paid to the plaintiff and the court. In February 2006 the court ordered Jensen to pay $250 a month to the city until the balance was paid in full.

In aggravation, Jensen had a record of prior discipline.

The order took effect May 14, 2011

Garabed Kamarian, State Bar #236670, Glendale (April 13, 2011). Kamarian, 51, was suspended for 20 months and placed on four years of probation following his misdemeanor conviction for violating Penal Code § 32, accessory to a felony after the fact, an act involving moral turpitude, and for engaging in the unauthorized practice of law.

In December 2009 Kamarian was placed on interim suspension for the Penal Code violation. The conviction resulted from a real estate transaction in which Kamarian helped a client, who was also a friend, to purchase a house. Kamarian agreed to purchase the house in his name because the client did not qualify for a loan. The client would make monthly payments to Kamarian, and then Kamarian would file a quitclaim deed naming the client and his wife as the property owners. The client made one payment and then defaulted on the loan. The property went into foreclosure. Kamarian told the client that he would cure the default and assume the loan, but the couple declined the offer.

In a second matter, in April 2009 Kamarian helped a former client with an Internal Revenue Service investigation and audit. By December 2009 the IRS matter was not resolved, and Kamarian communicated with the former client after the effective date of his interim suspension, when he was not entitled to practice law.

In aggravation, the misconduct was surrounded or followed by bad faith, dishonesty, concealment, or overreaching, which caused significant harm to the client, the public, or the administration of justice. In mitigation, Kamarian cooperated with the State Bar and took steps to demonstrate his remorse and atone for the consequences of his misconduct.

The order took effect May 13, 2011

Frank L. Kucera, State Bar #124617, Oakland (April 13, 2011). Kucera, 61, was suspended for 60 days and placed on two years of probation for attorney misconduct in five client matters by failing to appear for case-management hearings, failing to pay judicial sanctions, and failing to maintain respect due the courts.

Kucera was a contract attorney for another person and relied on that person’s calendaring system, which was defective and caused him to miss court dates.

In aggravation, Kucera had a record of prior discipline. In the current matter, the misconduct involved multiple violations of court orders. In mitigation, Kucera cooperated with the State Bar by agreeing to imposition of discipline without a hearing.

The order took effect May 13, 2011

Robert Y. Lee, State Bar #213848, Los Angeles (April 21, 2011). Lee, 42, was suspended for 60 days and placed on two years of probation following his conviction for violating Penal Code § 242, battery, a misdemeanor.

In December 2009 Lee pleaded nolo contendere to the Penal Code violation. He was placed on criminal probation for 36 months and was ordered to complete a 52-week domestic violence prevention program.

In aggravation, Lee had a record of prior discipline. In mitigation, he cooperated with the State Bar during its investigation and proceedings.

The order took effect May 21, 2011

Eric J. Prosser, State Bar #185726, Vista (March 18, 2011). Prosser, 41, was suspended for 60 days and until the State Bar terminates the suspension. Prosser was disciplined for attorney misconduct in two client matters by failing to respond to client inquiries, failing to keep clients informed about significant developments in their cases, improperly withdrawing from representation, failing to promptly release a client’s file, failing to maintain a current address with the State Bar, and failing to cooperate with a State Bar investigation.

In aggravation, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing. Prosser also failed to file a response to the notice of disciplinary charges prior to entry of his default. In mitigation, Prosser had no record of prior discipline since being admitted to the bar in 1996.

The order took effect April 17, 2011

Benjamin Robinson, State Bar #107550, Marina Del Rey (March 30, 2011). Robinson, 69, was suspended for two years and placed on three years of probation for attorney misconduct in four matters. He remains suspended until he makes restitution of $8,000 to one client and until he provides proof of his rehabilitation, fitness to practice, and learning and ability in the law. Robinson was suspended for failing to maintain client funds in trust, misappropriating funds, using the client trust account as a personal checking account, issuing client trust account checks against insufficient funds, failing to competently perform legal services, failing to return unearned fees, failing to promptly pay out client funds, failing to cooperate with a State Bar investigation, failing to comply with conditions to an agreement in lieu of discipline, and engaging in acts of moral turpitude, dishonesty, or corruption.

In aggravation, Robinson had a record of prior discipline. In the current matter, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing. He demonstrated indifference toward rectification of or atonement for the consequences of his misconduct, and he failed to cooperate with a State Bar investigation. In mitigation, the Review Department gave Robinson minimal credit for entering into a partial stipulation with the State Bar.

The order took effect April 29, 2011

Ruben F. Sanchez, State Bar #118309, Dominican Republic, (March 30, 2011). Sanchez, 54, was suspended for 30 days and placed on three years of probation for failing to comply with conditions to a previous order of discipline.

In October 2008 Sanchez was placed on probation for entering into a business transaction with a client by borrowing $20,000. Sanchez failed to comply with conditions to the discipline by failing to timely contact the Office of Probation. He submitted his 2010 quarterly probation reports months late and failed to make payments on the loan obtained from the client.

In aggravation, Sanchez had a record of prior discipline, the underlying matter. In mitigation, he cooperated with the State Bar during its investigation by admitting all material allegations, and he filed his delinquent probation reports. Also, during the period of misconduct, he experienced severe financial stress.

The order took effect April 29, 2011

David P. Schwartz, State Bar #45914, Ojai (March 24, 2011). Schwartz, 68, was suspended for one year and until the State Bar Court terminates the suspension. He was disciplined for failing to comply with conditions to a previous order of discipline.

In July 2009 Schwartz was suspended for 30 days and placed on one year of probation for improperly withdrawing from representation, failing to respond to client inquiries, failing to notify a client of significant developments in the client’s case, failing to release a client’s file, and failing to cooperate with a State Bar investigation. Schwartz failed to comply with conditions to the discipline by failing to file his quarterly probation report for January 2010 and failing to initiate binding fee arbitration as he promised the client.

In aggravation, Schwartz had a record of prior discipline, the underlying matter. The current misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing, and he demonstrated indifference toward rectification of or atonement for the consequences of his misconduct. Also, he failed to participate in the State Bar proceedings prior to entry of his default.

The order took effect April 23, 2011

Frank P. Sprouls, State Bar #166019, San Francisco (March 30, 2011). Sprouls, 54, was suspended for 90 days and placed on two years of probation after being found culpable of attorney misconduct in two matters, which included 51 acts of misconduct in cases he filed with the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals. Sprouls was disciplined for failing to competently perform legal services, attempting to mislead a judge or court by misstatement of fact, and maintaining unjust actions.

In April 2005 a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit issued an order to show cause (OSC) concerning Sprouls’s misconduct in 65 cases. The panel of judges referred the matter to an appellate commissioner for hearing, report, and recommendation.

In another matter, in 2004 Sprouls was paid $2,500 to reopen a client’s immigration matter. In February 2004 Sprouls filed a motion to reopen the client’s case. The motion contained two false statements of fact in the accompanying declaration, which was not seen and not signed by the client. Nonattorney staff in Sprouls’s office created the declaration and motion. In December 2004 the immigration judge and the Bureau of Immigration Appeals (BIA) denied the motion, and in November 2005 Sprouls filed an opening brief with the Ninth Circuit. The brief contained the same declaration with the same false statements.

In December 2006 the court appointed pro bono counsel to represent the client. In a supplemental brief, the new attorney alleged ineffective assistance of counsel. In October 2007 the court remanded the case to the BIA. In its memorandum to the BIA, the court held that Sprouls’s deficient performance was obvious in the record and rose to the level of a due process violation.

In aggravation, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing that caused harm to the Ninth Circuit’s administration of justice. In mitigation, Sprouls had no record of prior discipline since being admitted to the bar in 1993. He also presented evidence of his good character, demonstrated remorse, and took steps to atone for the consequences of his misconduct.

The order took effect April 29, 2011

William B. Sullivan, State Bar #171637, San Diego (March 24, 2011). Sullivan, 44, was suspended for 60 days and placed on two years probation for attorney misconduct in four matters by allowing his law partner to manage the client trust account without oversight, failing to maintain client funds in trust, allowing client funds to be misappropriated by the partner in three client matters, and engaging in acts of moral turpitude, dishonesty, or corruption.

In aggravation, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing that harmed clients. In mitigation, Sullivan had no record of prior discipline since being admitted to the bar in 1994. Also, he cooperated with the State Bar during its investigation and proceedings.

The order took effect April 23, 2011

Nana S. Gyamfi, State Bar #171480, Los Angeles (February 2, 2011). Gyamfi, 42, was placed on two years of probation for failing to notify a client and the State Bar that she employed a suspended attorney to perform work for her law firm.

In April 2005 Gyamfi was hired to represent a criminal defendant, who was serving a 30-year prison term for burglary with enhancement under the three-strikes law. The client’s grandmother paid Gyamfi $7,000 over a period of ten months to appeal her grandson’s enhanced prison term. At the time, Gyamfi employed a suspended attorney to perform legal services. She failed to notify the State Bar, the grandmother, and the defendant about hiring a suspended attorney to work in her law office.

The next month, Gyamfi filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus with the U.S. District Court, and in August 2005 the court dismissed the petition.

In aggravation, Gyamfi had a record of prior discipline. In mitigation, she submitted ten letters attesting to her good character, integrity, and community service.

The order took effect March 4, 2011

PROBATION

Kevin M. Harr, State Bar #149572, Santa Monica (February 18, 2011). Harr, 45, was placed on two years of probation for attorney misconduct in two matters by failing to maintain client funds in trust and failing to cooperate with a State Bar investigation.

In September 2008 Harr wrote a check to pay filing fees on behalf of a client who promised to deposit $320 into Harr’s client trust account. But the client failed to make the deposit and the check for the filing fees was returned for insufficient funds. Harr did not learn about the returned check until the following month.

In December 2008 and January 2009 a State Bar investigator wrote to Harr regarding a notice by the bank about the returned check. In April 2009 the investigator sent a notice to Harr’s office requesting the release of bank records to the State Bar, but it was returned as unclaimed. Harr failed to cooperate with a State Bar investigation.

In aggravation, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing. In mitigation, Harr had no record of prior discipline since being admitted to the bar in 1990. No clients were harmed by the misconduct, and he cooperated with the State Bar during its proceedings.

The order took effect March 20, 2011

John Molina, State Bar #218637, Corona (February 18, 2011). Molina, 37, was placed on two years of probation for failing to respond to client inquiries and agreeing to return advance fees in exchange for withdrawal of a State Bar complaint.

In October 2008 Molina was paid $1,500 to help clients with home loan services. That month and in January 2009 Molina spoke with the lender about obtaining loan services for the client. He also asked the clients for an additional $1,500 as fees to continue his work. The clients agreed to pay the additional fees, but first they wanted to see the letter Molina said he was sending to the lender. Between January and March 2009 the clients left telephone messages for Molina requesting information about negotiations with the lender, but he failed to respond. In April 2009 a State Bar investigator wrote to Molina, regarding allegations of misconduct filed against him by the clients. A few days after receiving the investigator’s letter, Molina telephoned the clients and offered to refund $1,000 of the initial fee if they would withdraw their State Bar complaint. Between May and July 2009 Molina returned $1,000 in three payments to the clients.

The order took effect March 20, 2011

PUBLIC REPROVAL

Jeffrey P. Alpert, State Bar #165997, Encino (February 3, 2011). Alpert, 46, received a public reproval for attorney misconduct in two client matters by failing to competently perform legal services, failing to obtain court approval to withdraw as the client’s attorney, improperly withdrawing from representation, failing to release a client file upon termination of employment, failing to respond to client inquiries, failing to keep a client informed about significant developments in the client’s case, and failing to cooperate with a State Bar investigation.

In aggravation, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing, causing dismissal of a client’s case and preventing the client from recovering damages from the defendant. In mitigation, Alpert had no record of prior discipline. During the time of his misconduct, he was diagnosed with a medical condition for which he received treatment. He cooperated with the State Bar by stipulating to the facts, conclusions of law, and the discipline to be imposed.

The order took effect February 24, 2011

Mark H. Galyean, State Bar #220617, Aliso Viejo (January 24, 2011). Galyean, 42, received a public reproval for failing to return unearned fees and failing to return a client’s file.

In September 2009 Galyean was paid $2,500 to represent a client in a dispute with a homeowners association. He promised the client that he would send a demand letter but then failed to do so. The client terminated his services in November 2009. In July 2010 the client sent a letter requesting return of the advance fees along with the file and documents he had provided to Galyean, but Galyean failed to respond.

The order took effect February 15, 2011

Steven A. Schectman, State Bar #98556, Oakland (February 14, 2011). Schectman, 58, received a public reproval for failing to competently perform legal services, failing to keep a client informed about significant developments in the client’s case, failing to comply with conditions to an agreement in lieu of discipline, failing to submit mental health reports, failing to submit proof of passing the professional responsibility exam, and failing to attend State Bar ethics school.

In mitigation, Schectman had no record of prior discipline since being admitted to the bar in 1981. He cooperated with the State Bar during its investigation and proceedings. Also, during the period of misconduct, he experienced emotional difficulties.

The order took effect March 7, 2011

Robert G. Schwartz, State Bar #67457, Rancho Cucamonga (January 12, 2011). Schwartz, 64, received a public reproval for attorney misconduct in four client matters by failing to return unearned fees in two matters and failing to provide accountings of client funds in two matters.

In aggravation, Schwartz had a record of prior discipline. In mitigation, Schwartz cooperated with the State Bar by entering into a comprehensive stipulation. Also, during the period of misconduct, Schwartz suffered from a severe illness for which he was hospitalized on two occasions.

The order took effect February 2, 2011

Barbara A. Smart, State Bar #147719, Hayward (January 20, 2011). Smart, 55, received a public reproval after being placed on one year of probation by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Northern District of California, for professional misconduct by failing to competently perform legal services.

Smart failed to appear in court in nine cases, caused unreasonable delay in twelve cases, and failed to respond to client requests for status reports.

In aggravation, the misconduct involved multiple acts of wrongdoing. In mitigation, Smart had no record of prior discipline since being admitted to the bar in 1990. Also, during the period of misconduct, Smart experienced severe medical problems and was hospitalized for six weeks following surgery.

The order took effect February 10, 2011

Edward M. Weisz, State Bar #107756, Woodland Hills (January 18, 2011). Weisz, 60, received a public reproval for failing to promptly return unearned fees.

In March 2008 Weisz received advance fees from a client and from her employer. In July 2008 Weisz notified the client that she was not selected in a random lottery for a foreign worker visa in a specialty occupation. He also notified the client that a refund would be forthcoming in two weeks. Between February and August 2009 Weisz returned the unearned fees to the client and to the employer.

In mitigation, Weisz had no record of prior discipline since being admitted to the bar in 1983.

The order took effect February 8, 2011

Scott S. Wippert, State Bar #213521, Chico (December 17, 2010). Wippert, 39, received a public reproval following his conviction for driving under the influence of alcohol.

In January 2007 Wippert was involved in an automobile accident and was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. A test revealed his blood-alcohol level to be .24 percent. In October 2007 he pleaded no contest to violating Vehicle Code § 23152(b), driving under the influence of alcohol with a blood-alcohol level greater than .08 percent. He was given a suspended sentence and placed on three years of probation.

In November 2009, during his probation period, Wippert was again arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol, with a blood-alcohol level of .22 percent. In February 2010 he pleaded guilty to driving under the influence with a prior conviction. He was sentenced to serve 20 days in jail and placed on five years of probation. He also was ordered to complete an 18-month treatment program and was fined $2,263.

In mitigation, no clients were harmed by the misconduct. Also, Wippert cooperated with the State Bar during its investigation and proceedings.

The order took effect January 7, 2011

There are no recent disciplinary actions of this type.