Monday, October 19, 2009

Dem Freeholder Candidate Sean Byrnes Facing Ethics Charges

Thomas Stokes of Middletown just filed over the past few days formal complaints against Democrat Middletown Committeeman and Freeholder candidate Sean F. Byrnes, Esq, with the Finance Board in Trenton and the Attorneys Ethics Committee in Monmouth County.

Mr. Byrnes has been involved (as an attorney) in litigation against Mr. Stokes over the past years. Despite this adversarial legal relationship, Mr. Byrnes refused to recuse himself (as a township committeeman) when Mr. Stokes appointment to the Middletown Sewer Authority was discussed. Mr. Byrnes made comments on that appointment and voted against it.

This is against the state law, which states:
40A:9-22.5 Provisions requiring compliance by local government officers, employees
Local government officers or employees under the jurisdiction of the Local Finance Board shall comply with the following provisions:

d. No local government officer or employee shall act in his official capacity in any matter where he, a member ofhis immediate family, or a business organization in which he has an interest, has a direct or indirect financial or personal involvement that might reasonably be expected to impair his objectivity or independence o/judgment;

As an attorney, Sean Byrnes should've been aware of this statute and obey the law. Tom Stokes has been in litigation against the law firm of McKenna, Dupont, Higgins and Byrnes since 2001. Litigation is still ongoing, and Mr. Stokes will be deposed by the Freeholder candidate on Oct 20. However, on Jan 6, 2008, committeman Byrnes both discussed and voted against Mr. Stokes' appointment.

Thomas Stokes' supporting evidence can be downloaded here.

No comments:

Post a Comment