Louisiana Record

Friday, December 13, 2019

Larose attorney permanently disbarred; allegedly tried to smuggle contraband into detention center

Discipline

By Karen Kidd | Sep 26, 2019

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NEW ORLEANS (Louisiana Record) — Suspended Larose attorney Edward Duane Schertler II has been permanently disbarred following a Sept. 24 Louisiana Supreme Court attorney disciplinary proceeding over allegations that he smuggled contraband into a detention facility.

"[Schertler]'s conduct was intentional, and in acting as he did, he violated duties owed to the public, the legal system and the legal profession, causing actual harm," the eight-page disciplinary proceeding said.

The state high court accepted the recommendation of a Louisiana Attorney Disciplinary Board (LADB) hearing committee, issued in August, that Schertler be disbarred. Neither Shertler nor the office of disciplinary counsel filed an objection to the hearing committee's report, according to the proceeding. In June the LADB recommended Schertler be permanently disbarred.

Schertler, 43, was admitted to the bar in Louisiana on April 30, 2004, according to his profile at the Louisiana State Bar Association's website. Schertler had no prior record of discipline in Louisiana, according to the disciplinary proceeding.

Schertler has been ineligible to practice law in Louisiana since June 2015 for failing to satisfy mandatory continuing legal education requirements, to pay bar dues and disciplinary assessment, and to submit his trust account disclosure form. He has been on interim suspension since May 2016.

Lafourche Parish Sheriff officers allegedly caught Schertler trying to sneak contraband into the parish detention center during a March 2016 visit with his client who was an inmate at the center, according to the disciplinary proceeding.

"After explaining that they merely intended to examine the contents for contraband, [Schertler] opened his briefcase and attempted to obscure their view of the contents, which included several plastic heat-sealed bags," the disciplinary proceeding said. "The bags contained four cellular flip phones, chargers and tobacco, each of which is strictly forbidden as contraband."

Schertler was later jailed on charges he attempted to introduce contraband into a penal institution, a felony, as well as felony drug charges and possession of stolen items.

After he made bail, Schertler's counsel told the office of disciplinary counsel that Schertler planned to enter a drug treatment facility but he never did, according to the disciplinary proceedings. Instead, he "failed to appear for multiple court appearances, and for a time was considered a fugitive from justice for whom a bench warrant remained outstanding until recently," the disciplinary proceeding said.

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Louisiana State Bar AssociationLouisiana Attorney Disciplinary BoardLouisiana Supreme Court

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