federal judges

More

Judge in archdiocese bankruptcy case recuses himself over donations scandal | New Orleans

  • May 2, 2023

A federal judge overseeing a bankruptcy filing from the US’s second-oldest Roman Catholic archdiocese has recused himself from the case amid scrutiny of his donations to the church as well as his close professional relationship with an attorney representing archdiocesan affiliates in insurance disputes.

Greg Guidry, who was appointed to the judicial bench at New Orleans’s federal courthouse by the Donald Trump White House in 2019, issued an order after 8pm on Friday recusing himself from a role handling appeals in a contentious bankruptcy involving nearly 500 clergy sexual abuse victims.

It came a week after the Associated Press reported that he had donated tens of thousands of dollars to the archdiocese before consistently ruling in favor of New Orleans’s Catholic church during its Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing. And Guidry’s ruling came hours after the Guardian had joined the AP in asking questions about a lawyer who was involved in making those donations while his firm defended archdiocesan-related ministries – such as assisted living homes – and the church itself as an employer in medical malpractice lawsuits.

“I do not believe [recusal] is mandated, and no party has filed a motion to [recuse] me,” Guidry’s order read. “However, balancing my duty to decide the case with my duty to consider self-recusal if appropriate, I have decided to recuse myself from this matter in order to avoid any possible appearance of personal bias or prejudice.”

Guidry’s order on Friday marked a stark reversal of course from just a week earlier, when he told attorneys involved in the bankruptcy case that a federal judiciary committee on codes of conduct had approved his continuing to handle appeals related to the case despite his giving nearly $50,000 to New Orleans-area Catholic charities from leftover contributions he received after serving 10 years in the elected

Read the rest