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Massachusetts taxpayers paying for judge’s legal bills, guess where firm’s political donations go

CONTACT:Evan Lips, communications director
617-523-5005 ext. 245

BOSTON — Indicted Newton District Court Judge Shelley Richmond Joseph is currently enjoying a nice perk courtesy of hard-working Massachusetts taxpayers: legal representation from a tony Back Bay law firm.

This, despite facing federal charges for allegedly aiding and abetting the escape of a twice-deported illegal immigrant from her courthouse.
The Boston Herald reported that the law firm representing Judge Joseph has so far netted more than $127,000 in taxpayer dollars to defend her. The Trial Court had earlier suspended Judge Joseph without pay for her alleged actions. Another high-priced attorney, Foley Hoag LLP partner Michael Keating, is currently appealing to the Supreme Judicial Court  to get Judge Joseph’s $181,000 salary restored.

Meanwhile, partners at LibbyHoopes P.C., earning public money by representing Judge Joseph, have doled out more than $69,000 since 2002 in campaign donations almost exclusively to Democratic prosecutors.

A partial breakdown:

  • Middlesex County District Attorney Marian T. Ryan received $5,750 between 2013 and 2019.
  • Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins received $1,100 between 2018 and 2019.
  • Attorney General Maura Healey received $2,275 between 2013 and 2016.
  • Former gubernatorial candidate and Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley received $16,475 between 2005 and 2014.

Federal prosecutors charged Judge Joseph in April with obstruction of justice and perjury. The man in her courtroom had been facing drug-related charges. Immigration and customs enforcement authorities were present inside the courthouse and had been assigned to detain him.

Judge Joseph’s attorney, Thomas M. Hoopes, called the prosecution “absolutely political.”

State Republican Party Chairman Jim Lyons, however, wants Massachusetts families to know their tax dollars are being funneled into the coffers of an elite, politically-connected Democrat law firm.
“What’s political is a boutique law firm donating exclusively to far-left Democratic candidates,” said Lyons. “DAs Ryan and Rollins sued to keep ICE officials from doing their jobs inside Massachusetts courthouses, while AG Healey has said the prosecution of a judge for protecting criminal illegal aliens is a ‘politically-motivated attack.’”

“The Democrats want to make life easier for criminals, and they’re sticking Massachusetts taxpayers with the bill and leaving law-abiding residents to deal with the dangerous consequences.”