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Lawyer Who Wouldn’t Stop Texting in Court Has Convictions Upheld

Nov. 18, 2020, 7:28 PM

An immigration attorney’s misdemeanor convictions and $2,500 fine for refusing to comply with a judge’s order that she stop texting during a hearing will stand after the Fourth Circuit found the judge acted within his authority to maintain control over his courtroom.

The judge’s order was lawful despite a sign outside the courtroom stating that attorneys could use electronic devices “for clear and immediate business purposes only,” the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit said.

The court rejected Rebecca A. Moriello’s argument that the judge’s instructions to stop using her phone were unlawful because no federal regulation prohibited...

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