Saturday, April 7, 2007

Judge Phillip's Funds Running Low...

The long-running saga of the highway robbery of Judge John Phillips, confined against his will (and with no medical justification) in a nursing home in the Bronx, has been excellently chronicled by the Brooklyn Daily Eagle's Charles Sweeney in a series of articles detailing (in a suitably neutral tone) the unbelievably corrupt moves aimed at him by Brooklyn's "legal" system.

The latest article details the deterioration of the judge's physical health and mental state, after being restricted from having any visitors (including family) without the permission of a court-appointed watchdog.

When the judge was first incarcerated, his estate made up of Brooklyn real estate was worth $10 million. After a couple of years of (let's call it) "mismanagement," plus the failure to report the sale of his buildings and the failure to pay income taxes, and the improper and illegal writing of hundreds of thousands of dollars in personal checks from the judge's account (and the "disappearance" of $300,000), guess what? The judge is broke!

The Eagle reports: "In a matter of four-plus years, almost all of Phillips’ buildings have been sold at auction. Despite this, the former judge now finds himself broke, a virtual prisoner in a nursing home where he’s still restricted from receiving visitors without the approval of his current property guardian."

The whole affair is a chilling reminder that this could happen to anyone -- especially in Brooklyn.

Photo courtesy of Katielip's Photostream, Creative Commons license.


Anonymous said...

The Judge Phillips saga is a wake up call for everyone. The various guardians and lawyers have feasted off of Judge Phillips' estate while singing the song of protection. The court turns a blind eye while the person the court is supposed to be protecting is pauperized by the life pirates having control of him.

Protection or Plunder?

Clearly plunder.

For more information on guardian abuse, visit www.stopguardianabuse, the National Association to STOP Guardian Abuse

Elaine Renoire

mcbrooklyn said...

See also:

Anonymous said...

* Murray Feingold NY

Murray Feingold is old enough to retire. He has been a Postal
worker for over forty years. He holds a full time position earning
approximately $50,000 a year, in addition to working extensive overtime.

Murray was happy for all those years until he was introduced to the judicial system in 2000. The landlord of the building he had been living in for the prior ten years refused to make what Murray considered necessary repairs, so Murray resorted to 'self help' and withheld a portion of the rent. The apartment that Murray was living in was rent controlled, so it is easy to understand why the landlord decided to start eviction proceedings.

Instead of eviction, Murray was placed under guardianship by Hon.
Anthony Cutrona Justice of the Supreme Court in Kings County, Brooklyn, NY in March of 2001 in order to protect him. This is when Murray says his life turned into a nightmare. When a
guardian is appointed for a person, all their civil rights are lost. Murray could no longer control his own money. The court ordered that all of Murray's salary, including all overtime pay must be sent to the guardian, a company ironically called Self Help Community Services, Inc. Each week, the guardian returns $325 which he and his wife are expected to live on.

A recent copy of payments made by the guardian on behalf of
Murray were impossible to decipher. Many of Murray's over due bills to places like cable and cell phone companies, as well as one credit card bill, were in arrears. Some were accumulating interest almost equaling the minimum amounts being paid by the guardian. There was no indication of the amount of fees taken out by the guardianship company as compensation for their services. For the forty years prior to having a guardian, Murray claims, he had no problems paying all his bills, including car payments.

What I found most troubling when I met Murray was that his most
essential needs were not being met.  He was in dire need of dental work. He was missing a few of his bottom teeth. He spoke fast and loud and kept asking me to repeat myself. I questioned him about these matters and I was shocked at his answer. He told me that he had been having dental work done but when the bill became five hundred dollars, the guardian would no longer pay it.

He was more concerned with his loss of hearing which is having a
negative effect at his job. He says that his supervisor and co-workers find it annoying because they have to constantly repeat instructions because Murray can't hear them when they speak. Sometimes people mistake his loudness for aggressiveness. According to Murray, he had a hearing test done last week and he is totally deaf in his right ear and partially deaf in his left. He said that he had ordered three hearing aids from a company called hearing aid express using a personal check, but the guardian cancelled them.

It is hard to believe that a guardian of a person would not
immediately address the issues which are negatively effecting the health and well-being of someone under their watch but NASGA, the National Association to Stop Guardian Abuse reports that this is an ever growing problem because there is a lack of accountability in guardianship courts.

Murray has made his problem known to many agencies in New York, has contacted and emailed many New York state agencies, the first
lady, Oprah Winfrey, etc. and has been told that they can not help him. Murray says he has written to Judge Cutrona asking for a hearing in order to get rid of this guardianship so often that recently the Judge wrote back accusing Murray of harassing him.

Question. Why doesn't Murray just retire and quit his job?
Answer: The guardian will continue to get and control his pension.

Being a victim of a guardianship is like being caught in quicksand. You don't realize what you have gotten yourself into, and it is near impossible to get out. Murray's case is not an isolated one. Every day in every state across the country, guardians and conservators are being appointed, sometimes
unnecessarily and greedy, corrupt individuals are lining their pockets with assets that should go to the care of the elderly person.

Please join us in stopping guardianship abuse.
You can learn more about this corrupt enterprise and how you can
protect yourself and your loved ones at
Watch Murray and other victims on
Search word  NASGA

(NASGA) is a civil and human rights organization formed by victims
of forced and/or abusive guardianships and conservatorships. Our
purpose is to protect Wards and their families - both physically and financially through education, outreach, and advocacy. Our goal is to assure that the law is not being misused to advantage special interests.