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University of Southern California Gould School of Law. Photo: Chris Flynn

A California appeals court has upheld the University of Southern California’s expulsion of a former law student who cheated in an attempt to get onto law review, then tried to pin the blame on a classmate once she was discovered.

Claudine Tinsman had argued that she was suffering from mental illness at the time of her transgressions, and that the university had not properly followed a lower court’s directive to reconsider her case in light of that disclosure. But a three-judge panel of Division Seven of the Second Appellate District on Monday ruled that a subsequent university misconduct panel had appropriately weighed Tinsman’s mental illness when it recommended for a second time that she should be expelled. Expulsion is the appropriate sanction for the severity of her offenses—which included criminal acts—even in light of her mental illness, that panel found.

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Karen Sloan

Karen Sloan is the Legal Education Editor and Senior Writer at ALM. Contact her at [email protected] On Twitter: @KarenSloanNLJ Sign up for Ahead of the Curve—her weekly email update on trends and innovation in legal education—here: https://www.law.com/briefings/ahead-of-the-curve/

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