California Attorney James Kroetch​​​​​​​ Facing Disbarment: My Late Brother’s Child Porn Defense Didn’t Work

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Of course, a convicted child porn attorney should be DISBARRED IMMEDIATELY - not requiring a hearing. It was a criminal conviction.

California Attorney James Kroetch Facing Disbarment: My Late Brother's Child Porn Defense Didn't Work

The California State Bar Court Review Department proposes disbarment for a child pornography conviction

In February 2013, Respondent came to the attention of the Silicon Valley Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (SVICAC) with the Pleasant Hill Police Department while the unit was conducting automated internet sweeps of the area. The SVICAC utilizes a law enforcement software program, E—Phex, to automate the browsing and downloading of suspected child pornography files from a list of internet addresses. The SVICAC began monitoring Respondent's IP address on February 9, 2013, and continued through March 20, 2013. Between February 10, 2013, and February 22, 2013, the E-Phex programs obtained a list of files reported as being shared on the network from Respondent’s computer. The SVICAC recognized many of those files as known child pornography files.

A search warrant was obtained

On March 21, 2013, a search Warrant was served on Respondent at his residence. A search of his residence was conducted and multiple computers and drives were seized. During the execution of the search warrant the peace officers did a preliminary review of at least two computers and found images of child pornography. Respondent was arrested without incident at his residence. SVICAC had the computers, external drives, thumb drives, etc., examined by Silicon Valley Regional Computer Forensics Laboratory. Upon examining the computers, external drives, and thumb drives, the laboratory determined that the hard drives, and other forensic evidence obtained at Respondent’s residence, contained over 9,000 images of child pornography. In addition, over 3,000 videos of child pomography were in Respondent’s possession.

The laboratory also determined that Respondent had modified several images wherein Respondent inserted himself into photos depicting sexual acts with children. Most of the images involved children very young in age ranging in ages from 1 to 12. The laboratory also determined that Respondent was using peer-to-peer networks to share and disseminate child pornography with other users.

The crimes involved moral turpitude. 

As to attitude

Respondent equivocated in discussing his child pornography conviction. He stated that he admitted his crime, but that his actions were only “digital” and had never left his room in committing this crime. He further stated: “For a period of my life my sexuality involved acts in my room that violated the moral standards of my community. My sexuality was wrong. I will not justify my actions. My actions were wrong.” He then argued that his actions never affected his ability to practice law, stating “my improper acts never interfered with my legal analysis and my legal practice. No one knew of my secret life.’’

A late-blooming contention

At trial, Respondent claimed for the first time that the child pornography found in his home belonged to his brother. He testified that he had never seen child pornography. Respondent stated that his brother had moved out the day before Respondent was arrested and that his brother had since died.

The court finds that Respondent’s testimony was not credible. Resp0ndent’s argument changed throughout these proceedings from an argument about his “sexual orientation” to denying that he had ever seen child pornography and placing the blame on his dead brother. Respondent never presented any evidence that his brother actually lived with him or that he told anyone, at any point before trial, that his brother was to blame. The officers that testified at trial were credible and their testimony was consistent.  Respondent displayed a lack of candor during these proceedings. As such, the court finds that his dishonesty is a considerable aggravating factor.

Disbarment is not automatic because the conviction was a misdemmeanor.

Source: Professional Legal Blog