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Women accuse New Jersey divorce judge of pro-husband bias

A number of divorced women from several New Jersey suburbs have rallied against a divorce judge who they say has demonstrated a clear bias in favor of their wealthy ex-husbands. They claim the judge has a history of unfair property distribution arrangements, evicting women from their marital homes and revoking custody of their children. The judge is also accused of several other missteps, such as failing to enforce court orders and making brash decisions without the appropriate legal hearings.

One woman said she was able to secure sole custody of her children after her ex-husband was arrested in 2007 for alleged involvement in organized crime. However, she claims the judge then revoked her child custody and granted it her former spouse, despite claims that he murdered another gangster in the 1990s. "The fact that [the judge] awarded custody to a violent felon, ex-mobster turned informant shows that he did not consider the safety and well-being or best interest of my children," explained the woman.

The women have been largely successful in publicizing their concerns, with one taking the issue directly to New Jersey governor Chris Christie at a town-hall meeting. Christie responded by saying that the state should appoint judges "who understand that their job is to interpret the law, and not make the law." Additionally, two of the ex-wives say they have been contacted by FBI investigators, and state officials have reportedly considered an investigation into the judge's alleged misdeeds. The judge declined to speak to reports about the accusations.

New Jersey family law can be extremely complex, making it difficult for those without legal knowledge to assert their rights in the courtroom. This makes it important for individuals involved in divorces, child custody or child support cases to consult with an experienced attorney to ensure their interests are properly represented.

Source: New York Post, "NJ ex-wives say divorce judge favors rich hubbies," Gary Buiso, June 24, 2012

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