Ky. Board recommends disbarment for Chesley

Case heads to Ky. Supreme Court

LEXINGTON, Ky. - The hearing to determine if Cincinnati attorney Stan Chesley will be able to keep his law license to practice in Kentucky and possibly in Ohio ended in Lexington Tuesday afternoon.

The Board of Governors of the Kentucky Bar Association has voted to accept the Trial Commissioners recommendation that Chesley be disbarred and repay more than $7 million in legal fees.

Chesley can appeal this decision to the Supreme Court of Kentucky, after which the court will have 60 days to make a decision.

Fifteen members of the Board of Governors of the Kentucky Bar Association listened to oral arguments from Chesley's attorney Sheryl Snyder.

His argument was focused on challenging findings that Chesley ratified certain documents in the case and questioned how he handled restitution issues.

Chesley is accused of violating legal ethical standards in handling of fen-phen cases.

The attorney for the Kentucky Bar Association alleged in oral arguments that Chesley and three other attorneys handling fen-phen cases displayed "unbridled greed."

Chief Bar Counsel Linda Gosnell compared the fen-phen case -- with its $200 million settlement for 431 claimants and $20 million in fees for Chesley -- to the Watergate scandal of the 1970s.

"Just ask. 'What happened to the money?''' she told members of the Kentucky Bar Association's Board of Governors at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Lexington. "Mr. Chesley has been from the start a part of the fraud."

Chesley has been accused of professional misconduct and violating legal ethical standards in handling of fen-phen cases.

"His callous insubordination of the interests of his clients to his own greed is both shocking and reprehensible," wrote William L. Graham in a February ruling.

Three other attorneys in the case have been disbarred.
Two dozen claimants in the fen-phen case are listening to the arguments. They're seated around the outside of a hotel ballroom with members of the media.

Chesley sat between his attorneys, both of his hands folded either on his lap or on the table in front of him. His wife, U.S. District Judge Susan Dlott, is seated behind him.

Stay with 9 News, and for reaction on the Chesley disbarment hearing.

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