Local Attorney Aretakis Suspended from Practice for 'Frivolous Conduct'

December 11, 2008

Local attorney John Aretakis has been condemned by the Committee on Professional Standards in Albany for professional misconduct, and is being suspended from practice for one year.

Aretakis made headlines for pursuing sex abuse cases against the Catholic Church.

The petition against Aretakis found he "engaged in frivolous conduct by making false accusations against judges... engaged in conduct that adversely reflects on his fitness as an attorney, asserted positions which served to harrass and maliciously injure, knowingly made false statements of law and fact, and engaged in undignified and discourteous conduct degrading to the court."

One of the cases cited to support the panel's findings was Aretakis's action against the Catholic Church and federal government, saying a "number of the allegations in the complaint filed by respondent were not only absolutely irrelevant to the plaintiff's claims, but their recitation was an intentional effort by respondent to use the litigation to further his 'personal vendetta' against the Catholic Church.

Aretakis will be suspended from practicing law beginning January 2, 2009.

In a faxed press release, Aretakis accused Roman Catholic Diocese Bishop Howard Hubbard of using his influence to try to "muzzle" him for the past six years "due to my effective work in exposing sexual predators in ministry."

Aretakis said he was in the Bahamas until next Monday but planned to hold a press conference Tuesday afternoon.


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