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|Current Court Information:|
|United States District Court for the Southern District of New York|
|Station:||New York, NY|
|Active:||1993 - Present|
|Undergraduate:||Manhattan College, B.S., 1972|
|Law School:||New York U. Law, J.D., 1975|
Ronald L. Ellis is a federal magistrate judge for the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. He was appointed to this position in 1993.
Biography and Education
Judge Ellis was born in 1950 in LaFourche, Louisiana. Judge Ellis received his bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering from Manhattan College in 1972 and his J.D. degree from New York University in 1975.
Judge Ellis began his career as a patent attorney. He soon joined the NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund, Inc., where he worked from 1976 until his judicial appointment. During this time, he was the Director of the Fund's Fair Employment Program (1984 to 1990) and the Director of its Poverty & Justice Program (1990 to 1993). He also taught law for twelve years at New York University and for three years at the New York Law School.
NYC settles with five men wrongfully convicted (2014)
In April 1989, Trisha Melli was jogging through Central Park in New York City when she was attacked. She was raped and beaten. The police arrested a group of teenage boys, ages 14 to 16, all of black or latino ethnicity. It appears the police coerced confessions from the boys which ultimately led to convictions and jail time. In 2002, an inmate unconnected with the five men confessed to the attack, and his DNA matched that found at the crime scene. The Manhattan District Attorney's Office asked for the convictions to be vacated. New York City has not admitted any wrongdoing on its part and refused to make a monetary settlement until now. Four of the men will receive $7.125 million and one man, who spent nearly 13 years in prison, will receive $12.25 million. The settlement, which took years to work out, had to be approved by Judge Ronald Ellis.
Bernie Madoff case (2009)United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (UNITED STATES v. BERNARD L. MADOFF, 09 cr. 213(DC))
Ellis was the presiding judge in the case of disgraced investor Bernard Madoff in a alleged Ponzi scheme that impacted close to $50 billion dollars. On January 12, 2009, Ellis ruled against a prosecutor's motion to revoke the bail of Bernard Madoff on the allegation that he sent heirlooms as part of the remaining assets he owned; which Federal Prosecutors claimed was a violation of his bail agreement. Madoff, who was charged in December 2008 with running a $50 billion Ponzi scheme, continued to live under house arrest in his apartment on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. Ellis imposed new conditions which included ordering Madoff to compile an inventory of all items in his home and barring him from transferring property. “Because the government has failed to meet its legal burden, the motion is denied,” Ellis wrote in a 22-page ruling. “The government has failed to articulate any flaw in the current conditions of release”. The United State's Attorney's Office revoked bail January 9,2009 after officials discover Madoff's attempts to mail valuable items to close family and friends. After waiving grand jury indictment, Madoff plead guilty to eleven criminal charges, including mail fraud and money laundering. Through comment by his attorney, Madoff announced that he would not appeal his 150-year sentence.
- U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York: A Retrospective (1990-2000), "Hon. Ronald L. Ellis profile," December 2002 Scroll to page 47
- Just the Beginning Foundation: Biography of Ronald L. Ellis
- Columbia Law School, "Ronald L. Ellis biography"
- "Bloomberg News," Federal Judge rules to keep Madoff's Bail, January 12, 2009
- ABC News, "Bernie Madoff Won't Appeal 150-Year Prison Term, Attorney Says," July 9, 2009
- The Wall Street Journal, "Madoff Jailed After Admitting Epic Scam," March 13, 2009