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Misconduct Report: November 2014

Loretta Preska

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Loretta Preska
Preska.jpg
Current Court Information:
United States District Court for the Southern District of New York
Title:   Chief Judge
Position:   Seat #1
Station:   New York, NY
Service:
Appointed by:   George H.W. Bush
Approval vote:   Unanimous
Active:   8/12/1992-Present
Chief:   2009-Present
Preceded by:   Robert Ward
Personal History
Born:   1949
Hometown:   Albany, NY
Undergraduate:   College of St. Rose, 1970
Law School:   Fordham University Law, 1973
Grad. School:   New York University Law, 1978

Loretta A. Preska is the chief judge for the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. She joined the court in 1992 after being nominated by President George H.W. Bush. Preska became the chief judge of the court in May of 2009 when Kimba Wood assumed senior status. Prior to her judicial appointment, Preska worked in private practice.[1]

Education

Preska graduated from the College of St. Rose with her bachelor's degree in 1970 and graduated from Fordham Law with her J.D. degree in 1973. She graduated from NYU Law with her Master of Laws degree in 1978.[1]

Professional career

Preska spent her legal career as a private practice attorney in New York City from 1973 to 1992.[1]

Judicial career

Federal judgeship

On the recommendation of U.S. Senator Al D'Amato, Preska was nominated by President George Bush on March 31, 1992, to a seat vacated by Judge Robert Ward. Preska was unanimously confirmed by the Senate on August 11, 1992, and received commission on August 12, 1992.[2]

Notable cases

AntiSec hacker sentenced after judge refuses to recuse (2013)

     United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (U.S. v. Hammond)

In March 2012, Jeremy Hammond was arrested and indicted for his involvement in the Stratfor email leak. Hammond was jailed for approximately eight months before Judge Preska denied him bail at a pretrial hearing. At the same hearing, Judge Preska informed Hammond that he could be could be sentenced to life in prison for his crimes. Months later, in February 2013, Hammond's defense team filed a motion asking that Judge Preska recuse herself, raising the possibility that she could be biased due to her husband's connection to the case. Judge Preska's husband, Thomas Kavaler, is a partner at the law firm Cahill Gordon & Reindel, and his emails were leaked in the Stratfor hack. Prior to joining the bench, Judge Preska was employed as a partner at the same firm. Moreover, several of the law firm's clients were victims of the hack. Judge Preska denied the motion, ruling that these facts did not meet the legal standard used to question a judge's impartiality in a case. On May 28, 2013, pursuant to a plea agreement, Hammond pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to engage in computer hacking. On November 15, 2013, Judge Preska sentenced him the maximum of 10 years in prison.[3][4][5][6][7]

Fed Reserve disclosure (2010)

     United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (Bloomberg v. Board of Governors of Federal Reserve System, No. 08 Civ. 9595 (LAP))

On August 24, 2009, Judge Preska ruled that the Federal Reserve must disclose the recipients of emergency loans and aid during the economic downturn.[8]

Bloomberg News took court action after the nation's central bank refused to comply with a Freedom of Information Act request. According to the network, Bloomberg News hoped that if they made public the recipients of bailout money it would deter more bailout money from being handed out.[8]

As part of her order, Preska gave the Federal Reserve five days to hand over the documents. On August 28, 2009, Judge Preska delayed her order requiring the Federal Reserve to disclose bailout recipients. Preska also allowed the Fed to file an appeal with the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.[9]

The case was subsequently argued in front of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals on January 11, 2010 and decided on March 19, 2010. The appellate court judges, Dennis Jacobs, Pierre Leval, and Peter Hall, upheld the decision reached by Judge Preska.[10]

See also

External links

References

Federal judicial offices
Preceded by:
Robert Ward
Southern District of New York
1992–Current
Succeeded by:
NA


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