Former Superior Court Judge Michael T. Joyce is seeking a venue change from Erie to Pittsburgh, Pa., for his criminal trial on insurance fraud charges — the first such trial of a former judge in 14 years. Once an appellate judge Joyce’s recreational activities — and abilities — will be at the heart of the case.
Joyce is charged with mail fraud and money laundering related to two insurance claims in 2001. He claimed serious injuries after his his new Mercedes-Benz at a speed estimated at 5 mph. Yes, 5 mph. While it would seem that a squirrel could survive such an accident with barely ruffled fur, Joyce was severely and horribly mangled — collecting $440,000.
In his claim, Joyce claimed “constant neck and back pain, excruciating headaches, serious discomfort and difficulty sleeping.” He specifically noted that he could no longer enjoy his love for golf, scuba dive or exercise.
The problem, prosecutors argue, is that Joyce allegedly used the money to buy a Harley-Davidson motorcycle and continued the full range of activities from inline skating to scuba diving all over the world.
He is not the only judge who will be a criminal defendant or target this year. Click here.
This case is also discussed on <a href=”http://howappealing.law.com/”How Appealing.