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Commonwealth of Massachusetts

NO. BD-2002-064


S.J.C. Judgment of Disbarment entered by Justice Cordy on December 6, 2002.1


On August 27, 2001, the respondent Sylvia A. Ryan-Webster was disbarred by the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of the State of New York, Second Judicial Department, when she was defaulted for failure to file an answer to a petition for discipline. Matter of Ryan, 285 A.D.2d 281, 729 N.Y.S.2d 627 (2001) The charges against the respondent that were deemed established by the court in New York were that the respondent filed appearances in four matters with the Board of Immigration Appeals while she was suspended from practice, and she failed to cooperate with the investigation conducted by bar counsel in New York.

The respondent failed to report to Bar Counsel that she had been suspended or disbarred in New York, despite the requirements of S. J. C. Rule 4:01, § 16(6), that she do so. On October 9, 2002, Bar Counsel filed a petition for reciprocal discipline with the Supreme Judicial Court for Suffolk County. Bar Counsel requested that the respondent be disbarred in Massachusetts and that the disbarment take effect on the entry date of the order. When the petition was filed, the respondent was still under an order of term suspension in Massachusetts for other misconduct. Matter of Ryan, 12 Mass. Att’y Disc. R 504 (1996).

On October 11, 2002, the county court issued an order directing the respondent to inform the court within thirty days why it should not impose identical discipline. Bar Counsel served the order on the respondent by certified and first class mail to her current mailing address. The correspondence sent by certified mail was returned to Bar Counsel by the post office with “Inmate refused to accept this mail” written on the envelope. The letter sent by first class mail was not returned. Bar Counsel also sent notice to the respondent’s registered address and an address in the District of Columbia furnished by bar counsel for the District of Columbia. The respondent failed to respond to the order of notice.

On December 6, 2002, the county court entered a judgment of disbarment effective on that date.

1 The complete Order of the Court is available by contacting the Clerk of the Supreme Judicial Court for Suffolk County.

2 Compiled by the Board of Bar Overseers based on the record before the Court.

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