In the Matter of Henry Morris, an attorney and counselor- at-law. Grievance Committee for the Tenth Judicial District, petitioner; Henry Morris, respondent. (Attorney Registration No. 1615087)
Motion by the Grievance Committee for the Tenth Judicial District to strike the respondent's name from the roll of attorneys and counselors-at-law, pursuant to Judiciary Law § 90(4)(b), based upon his felony conviction. The respondent was admitted to the Bar at a term of the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court in the Second Judicial Department on June 20, 1979.
Robert A. Green, Hauppauge, N.Y. (Stacey J. Sharpelletti of counsel), for petitioner.
Jody Pugach, P.C., Garden City, N.Y., for respondent.
RANDALL T. ENG, P.J., WILLIAM F. MASTRO, REINALDO E. RIVERA, PETER B. SKELOS, L. PRISCILLA HALL, JJ.
OPINION & ORDER
In or about March 2009, Indictment No. 25-09 was filed in the Supreme Court, New York County, charging the respondent with 24 counts of violating the Martin Act, a class E felony, in violation of General Business Law § 352-c(6).
On November 22, 2010, the respondent agreed to plead guilty under Count 19 of the Indictment. As part of his plea agreement, the respondent agreed to forfeit $19 million, and to be enjoined permanently from engaging in fraudulent practices in violation of article 23-A of the General Business Law and engaging in any business relating to the purchase or sale of, or the offer to purchase or sell, to the public within New York State, as principal, broker, or agent, or otherwise, any securities issued or to be issued.
As part of his plea agreement, the respondent stipulated that from January 2003 through December 2006, he was the chief paid political consultant to Alan Hevesi who, at the time, was the New York State Comptroller and the sole trustee of the New York Common Retirement Fund (hereinafter the CRF).
During that time, the respondent understood that David Loglisci, as Director of Alternative Investments, and then as Chief Investment Officer, was responsible for reviewing and recommending proposed investments by the CRF.
At or about that time, the respondent had financial interests related to certain alternative investments proposed by investment firms to the CRF. The respondent knew of and facilitated Loglisci's and Hevesi's recommendations and approvals of certain proposed alternative investments to generate, in part, fees to the respondent or others known to him. The respondent did not disclose those financial interests to any person other than Loglisci or Hevesi. The respondent stood to receive millions of dollars in fees from the proposed alternative investments Loglisci or Hevesi recommended and approved.
The respondent contemporaneously sought contributions to Hevesi's re-election campaign from, among others, those individuals whom the respondent knew were doing, or seeking to do, business with the CRF. The respondent knew that Loglisci or Hevesi recommended and approved proposed alternative investments for persons associated with those investments who contributed to Hevesi's campaign.
With respect to Count 19 of the Indictment, the respondent stipulated that "from in or about March 2005 through in or about February 2007, [he] intentionally engaged in fraud, deception, concealment, suppression, false pretense and fictitious and pretended purchase and sale, and made material false representations and statements with intent to deceive and defraud, while engaged in inducing and promoting the exchange, sale, negotiation and purchase within and from New York of securities... and thereby wrongfully obtained property... and fees related to the investment of CRF funds."
On February 17, 2011, the respondent was sentenced to an indeterminate term of imprisonment of 1⅓ to 4 years.
Upon information and belief, the respondent failed to notify this Court of his conviction, as required by ...