Being a federal bankruptcy judge is not an easy job under the best of circumstances. There are the needs of debtors and creditors to consider and emotions can often get heated.
The last thing a judge needs is someone involved in the court system who is out to do them harm.
Unfortunately that is what happened recently in California. A Fresno man got the ball rolling by starting a bankruptcy proceeding under Chapter 7. He followed up that action with a Chapter 9 filing in the same court two years later.
Angered by dismissal
The Chapter 9 case was dismissed. That did not sit well with the man who filed it.
He tried to set things right by going after a couple of judges. The course of action he selected was to file a series of liens on the personal property of the judges with the California secretary of state.
He listed the judges as debtors and himself as the secured party.
It wasn’t a smart move. The judges were well aware that filing bogus liens against federal officials for the purpose of harassment is a crime.
The man was asking to be prosecuted and he got what he asked for. The 56-year-old was found guilty of two counts of filing false liens on federal bankruptcy judges.
Lengthy sentence possible
He will be sentenced in early 2016. The maximum possible penalty is 10 years in prison on each count and a $250,000 fine.
The defendant went to a lot of trouble to settle a score with the judges and got very little satisfaction for his efforts.
He would have been better off having pizza delivered to the judges’ residences or sending over a taxi or Uber driver.
Not that I am advocating that kind of childish nonsense. I am merely suggesting that something relatively harmless is far better than committing a serious crime and facing the possibility of serving a long stretch in prison.