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Sources Say Appellate Division Appointments Delayed Backers of Westchester County Justice Daniel D. Angiolillo for a seat on the Appellate Division, Second Department, have forced a delay in Governor George E. Pataki’s plan to announce four new appointees to the 10-county appeals court, sources said. The late surge for Justice Angiolillo, they said, put on hold at least temporarily the appointment of Westchester Justice Robert A. Spolzino, who was previously counsel to state Senator Nicholas A. Spano and a former counsel to the county Republican party. Sources also report that Mr. Pataki is likely to pick the following for the remaining three Second Department vacancies: Nassau County Justice Peter B. Skelos, who is the brother of Dean G. Skelos, the state Senate deputy majority leader; Suffolk County Justice Robert A. Lifson; and Queens County Administrative Justice Steven V. Fisher. A fifth vacancy is expected when Second Department Justice Sandra L. Townes � who last week cleared the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee � is confirmed for an Eastern District seat. Sources also report that Suffolk County Justice James M. Catterson is in line to fill one of three First Department vacancies. His father, James M. Catterson Jr., was Suffolk County district attorney for three terms. The governor’s office also is reviewing the credentials of several minority candidates as it hones its First Department choices, the sources said. � Daniel Wise DA Files Suit to Halt Liens Against Judge, Prosecutor Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown has filed a suit against the New York Department of State to challenge what court papers describe as “bogus” liens brought against a prosecutor and a judge by a criminal defendant. James Walker, who is accused of cocaine possession, claims he has a copyright agreement with the prosecutor and judge entitling him to $500,000 every time they use his name in court proceedings without his permission. Queens prosecutors claim the tactic, which was rejected by a New York court ruling in 1997 and has become popular with defendants in the last two years, are attempts to harass prosecutors and judges. No agreements were signed with Mr. Walker, prosecutors say, adding that a name cannot be copyrighted. The Uniform Commercial Code restricts the Department of State from refusing lien filings except in limited circumstances, according to court papers. Mr. Brown’s office wants the department to invalidate the lien and prevent the defendant from seeking future ones. � Tom Perrotta Spargo Asks High Court to Hear His Case Attorneys for embattled Albany Supreme Court Justice Thomas J. Spargo have petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court for certiorari in an effort to get the judge’s challenge to the Code of Judicial Conduct back in federal court. Last year, U.S. District Judge David N. Hurd shot down on constitutional grounds key portions of the code as they relate to restrictions on the political speech of judges and judicial candidates. The U.S. Court of Appeals, invoking the abstention doctrine, said the matter did not belong in federal court. In their petition, Albany attorneys David F. Kunz and George J. Szary of DeGraff, Foy, Kunz & Devine focus not only on Justice Spargo, but on two citizen co-plaintiffs. Those plaintiffs challenged the code to the extent that it chilled or frustrated their free speech and free association rights as they related to Justice Spargo and his political activities. In the petition, the plaintiffs’ attorneys argue the Second Circuit improperly extended the abstention doctrine to, in effect, bar two private citizens from federal court. � John Caher Court Will Not Hear Boy Scouts’ Appeal The U.S. Supreme Court denied certiorari yesterday of a U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruling holding that the Connecticut State Employee Campaign Committee did not violate state law or the First Amendment when it prohibited the Boy Scouts from participating in its charitable contribution program. The committee had removed the Scouts from a list of participating charities to which state employees could contribute after the state’s human rights commission ruled that the Scouts’ policy of excluding homosexuals violated state gay rights laws. � Michael Bobelian

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