89-0 House vote OKs judge-li­a­bil­ity plan

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - NEWS - — John Moritz

A bill that would end ju­di­cial im­mu­nity for judges con­victed of bribery passed the House on Thurs­day, while a com­pan­ion bill deal­ing with abuse of of­fice ad­vanced through the House Ju­di­ciary Com­mit­tee.

Both bills are spon­sored by Rep. Clarke Tucker, D-Lit­tle Rock.

The House voted 89-0 to ap­prove House Bill 1007. The bill would al­low lit­i­gants ad­versely af­fected by a ju­di­cial de­ci­sion that is the re­sult of a bribe to sue the judge for dam­ages. Ju­di­cial im­mu­nity now pro­tects judges from be­ing held li­able for their court de­ci­sions.

For­mer Faulkner County Cir­cuit Judge Michael Mag­gio pleaded guilty in 2015 to low­er­ing a jury’s $5.2 mil­lion judg­ment against a nurs­ing home to $1 mil­lion, in ex­change for con­tri­bu­tions to his re-elec­tion cam­paign. Mag­gio is ap­peal­ing his sen­tence.

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