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Commonwealth of Massachusetts

NO. BD-2007-028

IN RE: STEPHEN RANIERI

S.J.C. Order of Term Suspension entered by Justice Ireland on December 22, 2008.1

(S.J.C. Judgment of Reinstatement entered by Justice Ireland on January 06, 2009.)

SUMMARY2

The respondent, Stephen Ranieri, was admitted to the bar of the Commonwealth on June 3, 2003. On March 22, 2004, he was convicted in the Middlesex Superior Court of operating to endanger; operating under the influence of alcohol; and operating under the influence of alcohol, third offense. He was sentenced to serve a term of imprisonment of two years to two years and a day in state prison and five years of probation thereafter. The respondent was suspended from the practice of law on March 7, 2005, and bar counsel filed a petition for discipline, which was deferred pending appeal.

On January 12, 2006, the Appeals Court reversed the convictions in Commonwealth v. Ranieri, 65 Mass. App. Ct. 366 (2006), further app. rev. denied, 446 Mass. 1106 (2006). The case was remanded to the superior court. On March 28, 2006, the respondent was reinstated to the practice of law.

The respondent was retried and convicted again of the charges on April 4, 2007. He was sentenced to time served on May 17, 2007.

Bar counsel filed second petition for discipline on May 22, 2007. The respondent filed an answer and a request to defer proceedings while his appeal was pending, which request was granted. On July 17, 2008, the Appeals Court upheld the conviction in Commonwealth v. Ranieri, 72 Mass. App. Ct. 1108 (2008).

On December 1, 2008, the respondent filed an amended answer to the petition for discipline, and the parties stipulated to a one-year suspension, retroactive to March 7, 2005. Because the respondent had been practicing law since his reinstatement in March 2006, the parties also agreed that the respondent would not be required to take and pass the Multi-state Professional Responsibility Examination (MPRE) as a condition of reinstatement.

On December 8, 2008, the Board of Bar Overseers voted to accept the parties’ stipulation and recommendation for discipline. On December 17, the Board of Bar Overseers filed an Information with the Supreme Judicial Court for Suffolk County recommending the stipulated sanction. On December 22, 2008, the single justice (Ireland, J.) ordered that the respondent be suspended for a year, retroactive to March 7, 2005, and that the requirement of taking and passing the MPRE prior to reinstatement be waived.


FOOTNOTES:

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 filed with the Supreme Judicial Court.



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