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Friday, March 29, 2024

A Duty to Uphold the Law

 From the State Bar of California:

In a 128-page ruling, California State Bar Court Hearing Judge Yvette D. Roland found licensee John Charles Eastman (SBN 193726) culpable of 10 of the disciplinary charges filed by the State Bar’s Office of Chief Trial Counsel (OCTC) and recommended that he be disbarred. Absent a challenge, the recommendation goes to the California Supreme Court for review.

As is the case for all State Bar Court disbarment recommendations, Eastman is ordered by the court to involuntary inactive status and cannot practice law in California while the Supreme Court considers the case. The order to inactive status is effective three calendar days after the order is served.

“Every California attorney has the duty to uphold the constitution and the rule of law,” said Chief Trial Counsel George Cardona. “Mr. Eastman repeatedly violated that duty. Worse, he did so in a way that threatened the fundamental principles of our democracy. The substantial evidence presented over 35 days of trial showed, and the court has now held, that Mr. Eastman abandoned his ethical and legal duties as an attorney to conspire with then-President Donald Trump to develop and implement a strategy to obstruct the counting of electoral votes on January 6, 2021, and illegally disrupt the peaceful transfer of power to President-elect Joseph Biden, knowing that there was no good faith theory or argument to lawfully reject the electoral votes of any state or delay the January 6 electoral count. Mr. Eastman’s efforts failed only because our democratic institutions and those committed to upholding them held strong. The harm caused by Mr. Eastman’s abandonment of his duties as a lawyer, and the threat his actions posed to our democracy, more than warrant his disbarment.”

Summarizing the court’s findings, the decision states, “Eastman’s wrongdoing constitutes exceptionally serious ethical violations warranting severe professional discipline,” and recommends his disbarment.