Summary: Once a judge, now Paul Moore is a convicted felon who tried to defraud the state retirement system.
Paul Moore was once sitting on the bench as a judge, now he is getting a view from the other side. Moore pleaded guilty Wednesday in the Merrimack County Superior Court to attempting to defraud the state retirement system. This plea makes Moore a convicted felon.
An investigation determined that Moore submitted false performance evaluations in order to try and work his way up the ladder, according to the prosecutors. WMUR reported that they had learned from the state that they uncovered the phony evaluations but when Moore was questioned, he blamed them on a mental condition, stating that when he filled out the forms on his computer, his panic attacks would subside. He subsequently applied for disability retirement. Moore claimed he suffered from chronic pain, anxiety, depression and traumatic stress so he could no longer work. That claim was false.
The state began to question his performance evaluations because he was receiving perfect scores on evaluations that were supposed to be completed by other lawyers and the public. The evaluations for 2008, 2011 and 2014 had scores much higher than other judges and the writing styles were the same on the reports, such as frequent exclamation points which he uses in his writing. His 2017 evaluation was submitted with an application for a Supreme Court appointment.
Associate Attorney General Jane Young stated, “He was given one of the highest positions in the state. He stood in judgment of people every day. …Had he been granted a disability retirement, he would have been paid a retirement plus benefits for the rest of his days that was paid with taxpayer dollars.”
Moore was sentenced to 12 months behind bars and must pay a fine of $4,000 and $3,900 to the Judicial Retirement System. His sentence was suspended but he will no longer work as a judge. During the plea hearing, Moore took accountability for his actions, apologizing to the court, his family, and to the others he has affected.
Moore said, “I brought this on myself. I deeply regret the actions that brought me before this court today, and I’m hoping that everyone involved at some time in the future will find it in their hearts to forgive me.”
Judge John Kissinger said, “It’s very disturbing, and it erodes public confidence in the important work that judges are asked to do.”
Had Moore been able to get the disability funds, he would have received over $1 million over the course of his lifetime of taxpayer dollars.
The attorney discipline office will determine if Moore will be disbarred but it is very likely that he will.
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To learn more about judge’s that fall from their positions, read these articles:
- Former Judge Paul Pressler Accused of Sexual Abuse of a Minor
- Italian Judge Accused of Running Cult-Like Law School
- Federal Judge Richard Roberts Escapes Judicial Punishment for Sexual Misconduct