Judge Recuses Himself After Denouncing Latte Drinking, Cigar-Smoking Lawyer

300px-Latte180px-Three_cohiba_cigarsJudge John Doyle is facing accusations that he is a latte-hating, cigar-smoker baiting jurist or worse. Doyle recused himself after losing his patience with a bank lawyer, Farzad Milani, and telling him that he could not allow the lawyer to sit in his office “smoking his Cohiba cigars and drinking his lattes” while the court does all the work. He should be less worried about playing around with judicial ethics as ticking off those jackbooted, over-caffeinated thugs at Starbucks.

Doyle has been allowing bank lawyers to appear by telephone in the 3,000 pending foreclosure cases before him, but has found that many lawyers simply do not pick up the phone. He was legitimately concerned about homeowners who take off work only to find that the bank lawyers are too busy to participate in the hearing. Doyle complained that Milani was one of those lawyers and was “the fellow that broke the camel’s back.” Milani demanded Doyle’s recusal and said that Doyle threatened to get him disbarred.

Milani insisted that Doyle’s comments contained “inferences of a racial or ethnic bias.” I am not sure what those inferences are.

I am sympathetic to Doyle who is upset over the treatment of these families and the shoddy work of what he called “foreclosure mills,” which he says train young attorneys “that it’s not a big deal to miss a hearing.”

After the controversy with Milani, the judge stopped the telephonic hearings, which will hardly make Milani popular with other lawyers who greatly benefited from the accommodation. Milani could still be held in contempt for missing the hearings. That is a rare punishment. The most obvious response to bank lawyers missing hearings could be a default or financial sanction.

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15 thoughts on “Judge Recuses Himself After Denouncing Latte Drinking, Cigar-Smoking Lawyer”

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  2. Farzad Milani had just recently passed his bar exam when this occurred. He may enjoy his lattes and Cohibas. He’s a young man who enjoys life. He’s learning early in his career, though, that the person on the other side of the bench can often times be a non-caring egomaniac.
    This is not Judge Doyle’s first encounter with controversity. A year or so ago, he was demoted from Circuit Judge to District Judge due to some appearance of impropriety.
    Speaking of improprieties, I have been made aware of a decision of an Alabama judge, Sonny Ferguson, who has provided for a documented child molester to babysit a 2 year old child. Please check out savemarysavannah.com

  3. Sadly, you failed to research Judge Doyle’s track record. Try filing a motion in his division and I am sure you will rewrite this blog. I am extremely saddened by the positive light you shed on this completely unsympathetic Judge. I hesitate to say more but there really is no justice in this division and, especially, not for a defendant in a foreclosure. As someone with experience on the bank side, I do not think, had you properly researched this matter, that you would still consider yourself “sympathetic”. Please write about how many homeowners lost their residences all thanks to a rubber stamp with the word “denied” stamped on the motion to cancel foreclosure sale filed by the plaintiff in their cases. But, surely, this is the fault of the attorney for bank…

  4. Its a shame sir that you post your blog without realizing or caring all Doyle is doing. Sadly you expressed your “sympathy”..I believe you truly do not know what is going on down here in Doyle’s courtroom, and therefore are not in a position to render a judgement. The News Journal article also did not paint a true picture. I’m hopeful that this will all come out in Milani’s appeal. But my guess is that the appeal will only address the cigar & latte commentary. Doyle is NOT, I emphasize NOT “legitimately concerned with homeowners” IN ANY WAY WHAT-SO-EVER. He doesn’t care if they miss work for a hearing. Let me restate that. He does not want them to miss work. Its a waste of a homeowners time to attend their hearing because they will not be heard and they will not be considered. Doyle does not want to help prevent foreclosures. I was personally in his courtroom to work out a short sale with a lender. He simply and proudly sits at his bench and yell at and berate all the parties involved for “wasting his time” and will not allow anyone more than about 5 words. I am aware of Doyle’s procedures, his treatment of attorney’s, and I am aware of multiple cases where there were legitimate workout arrangements between homeowners and lenders, but Doyle will refuse to postpone or cancel and sale, denying the lenders motion to have the sale stopped or postponed. He will NOT stop or postpone, no matter what the reason, even when the homeowner has completely brought their loan current!!!!

    Honestly as to Milani’s issue…Doyle doesn’t want attorney’s in his courtroom. He doesn’t want homeowners in his courtroom. He only wants to push through paperwork. Get the case closed. File the lis pendens. No answer. No additional motions. Just be done with it. If hearings were not required, they wouldn’t be happening at all. There is no reason for a homeowner to go to a hearing because they are not going to be heard. His ranting about cigars and lattes and sitting at their desk…just another excuse to rant. It’s fantastic that he made these “racist comments” and I applaud Milani for the actions he is taking…hopefully this will be a step in getting rid of Doyle.

  5. There is much more to this story than meets the eye.

    The story that has broke in the Daytona Beach News Journal was more than fair to Judge Doyle – not the use of “more than”, implying “less than fair” to Milani. I haven’t obtained the motion filed by Milani is the 5th District Court of Appeal but I do believe that if this was a simple dig over cohibas and lattes, there is no way Judge Doyle would have recused himself. We shall have to see.

    Judge Doyle was removed from family court earlier this year and demoted from circuit to county judge.

    A month ago, Judge Doyle made the TV news because he denied a motion to stop a foreclosure sale after the bank and the homeowner had worked out a deal using the Federal Loan Modification Program and the payments under that modification were current. Doyle dismissed it all and the home was sold on the steps of the court and the family put out.

    The link is here: http://emilyrosehindle.blogspot.com/2009/09/judge-doyle-steps-down-in-foreclosure.html

    I have personal experience of Judge Doyle. My daughter was sent to Florida from the UK for custody proceedings on condition she received medical treatment to prevent her blindness and ordered by the UK Supreme Court under an international treaty.

    Two things then occurred – firstly, upon being sent to Florida it was found Florida did not in fact have jurisdiction but Judge Doyle decided, “In this county, we’re provincials. We don’t do the Hague Convention [the international treaty]” and kept the little girl in Florida causing something of an international stink, but more shockingly, he refused to enforce the order for medical treatment and let the child go blind.

    Not everything is at it appears with Judge Doyle, who seems to be making light of Cohibas and Lattes more as a “Let’s laugh this silly affair off” because he realizes he’s actually gone too far over the judicial line and has been on thin ice for quite some time.

  6. The latte-cohiba tribe is over rated, I like the espresso-partagas tribe. Very dark and oh so fine. Now that’s my kind of racial profiling!

  7. Everyone knows about the rare Latte-Cohiba tribe of the Central Amazon! Surely this is racial profiling!

    Seriously, the bank clowns need to be sanctioned when they act this way.

  8. To paraphrase:

    Jittery, orally fixated, and not showing up for court-dates is no way to go through life son.

  9. Wayne,

    If Hitler had won the war, do you think the Vatican would still be in business today? Guess you are not aware that The Vatican played both sides of the fence. They would not help the Jews until they converted. It is my belief that if Hitler had won the war there would not be Catholics as Germany was in a transformational stage regarding Supremacy.

    What about this Anderson guy, I guess he makes your day too. Just because someone says it does not make it correct even if it is correct does not make it right and just because it is correct and right does not make it moral or immoral.

  10. Point of Practice for some that are not in the know:

    “IN MOST STATES” NOT ALL You can delay a Foreclosure for a while because the ORIGINAL LOAN HAS TO BE ATTACHED TO THE SUIT FOR FORCLOSURE.

    With the banks changing hands and the loan frauds, there is a good chance that they do not have the “Originals.”

    The Damn Banks. Oh, that nasty mean old Mr. Potter. Did Clarence get his wings yet?

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