Departing from both an attorney grievance committee and a referee’s recommendations for a punishment of suspension, a state appeals court has chosen to instead publicly censure a veteran Manhattan lawyer found guilty of 18 attorney misconduct charges linked to him converting or misappropriating client escrow funds.

In censuring attorney Richard S. Peskin and not doing more—based partly on health issues he had been experiencing—an Appellate Division, First Department panel turned back the attorney grievance committee’s recommendation of a two-year suspension for him and a court-appointed referee’s recommendation of a six-month suspension.

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