Judiciary

Legal Observers Say Conahan's Sentence Fair, Starting Point for Healing

, The Legal Intelligencer

   | 3 Comments

In the week following the 17.5-year federal prison sentence handed down to former Luzerne County President Judge Michael T. Conahan, several judicial watchers told the Law Weekly they were far from surprised by the high number.

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What's being said

  • Kathryn Grossman

    My comment of great reporting was in support of Larry Hohol. Judge Cleland described the legal system in the county as "inexplicable." He blamed the entire legal system including the District Attorney as being guilty in the Kids for Cash scandal. If the Legal compared the sentences handed out to the influent leaders of society proven guilty in the corruption probe to sentences handed out to the little guys guilty of drug use, breaking and entering, theft, and like crimes, you would be amazed. The comparison is so remarkable one can't ignore the implication that something is seriously amiss in Luzerne and Lackawana County.

  • Kathryn Grossman

    FANTASTIC reporting! Written the way news was meant to be reported. The probe was a farce.

  • Larry Hohol

    I couldn’t disagree more with all that were interviewed for this article. I am a Luzerne County Native and a former Law Enforcement Officer from this County. I am here to tell you that Ex-Judge/Convicted Felon Conahan told the biggest lie of his life while he addressed his victims and the Sentencing Judge. He stated the system was not corrupt, he was. The Chairman of the Judicial Conduct board was his business partner in two separate and distinct businesses during this time frame. Conahan was the highest profile witness called when a fellow judge suspected of a whistle blowing attempt on the “Kids for Cash” scandal was brought before the Pennsylvania Court of Judicial Discipline on non-criminal misconduct charges. This Judge (Lokuta) became the first Judge in the history of Pennsylvania to be removed from the bench without first being charged with a crime. The top 4 (highest profile) witnesses to testify against Judge Lokuta have since been arrested on corruption charges. The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania had a detailed “Kings Bench Petition” presented to it requesting emergency intervention in the “Kids for Cash” scandal long before the FBI made their arrests. The Supreme Court dismissed the petition without comment. At best the Supreme Court was inept. I am thinking culpable, after all, the son of a former Supreme Court Chief Justice was an owner of the Kiddy Prison at the heart of this scandal. Former President Judge Conahan was charged by a Federal Grand Jury on a laundry list of 48 felony counts. He pleaded guilty to one. The feeling of injustice and continued cover up are apparently shared by most everyone in Luzerne County with the exception being that of members of the Bar Association. As much as those in power would want to take a collective sigh of relief and get back to business as usual I am here to tell you there is a large ground swell of very unhappy, law abiding citizens who will not let any of this rest. Business as usual will not be business as usual. Not without a fight. Sign me: Larry Hohol-Author

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