Fraud Upon the Court
“Fraud Upon the court” occurs when the judicial machinery itself has been tainted, such as when an attorney, who is an officer of the court, is involved in the perpetration of a fraud or makes material misrepresentations to the court. Fraud upon the court makes void the orders and judgments of that court.
Bulloch v. United States, 763 F.2d 1115, 1121 (10th Cir. 1985 states: “Fraud upon the court is fraud which is directed to the judicial machinery itself and is not fraud between the parties or fraudulent documents, false statements or perjury. … It is where the court or a member is corrupted or influenced or influence is attempted or where the judge has not performed his judicial function — thus where the impartial functions of the court have been directly corrupted.”
It has recently become evident that the Director of the Board of Registration in Medicine’s Physician Health and Compliance Unit, attorney Deb Stoller, has been unethically and unlawfully withholding and concealing documentary evidence that is not only exculpatory to me but reveals that Physician Health Services (PHS) engaged in misconduct and fraud. She has essentially been concealing their crimes.
The “Administrative Record” filed by the Board was absent copious documentation of major importance and all of it was submitted through the care of Ms. Stoller. The missing documents include multiple petitions and supporting documents that are neither irrelevant nor superfluous. Each of these documents contains sufficient indicia of reliability to meet probative value.Concealing material fact, misrepresentation and making false statements to a state administrative agency is unethical. It constitutes abuse of power and fraud.
Fraud on the court occurs where a party tampers with the fair administration of justice by deceiving “the institutions set up to protect and safeguard the public” or otherwise abusing or undermining the integrity of the judicial process. Hazel-Atlas Glass Co. v. Hartford-Empire Co., 322 U.S. 238, 246 (1944).
The United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit skillfully defined the concept of fraud on the court in Aoude, supra at 1118, as follows: “A `fraud on the court’ occurs where it can be demonstrated, clearly and convincingly, that a party has sentiently set in motion some unconscionable scheme calculated to interfere with the judicial system’s ability impartially to adjudicate a matter by improperly influencing the trier or unfairly hampering the presentation of the opposing party’s claim or defense.”
Ms. Stoller is in violation of the Rules of Professional Conduct including Mass.R.Prof.C. 3.4(c). Fairness to Opposing Party and Counsel which states in part: A lawyer shall not: (c) knowingly disobey an obligation under the rules of a tribunal except for an open refusal based on an assertion that no valid obligation exists.
Mass.R.Prof.C Advocate Rule 3.3 Candor Toward The Tribunal reads:
(a)A lawyer shall not knowingly:
(1) make a false statement of fact or law to a tribunal or fail to correct a false statement of material fact or law previously made to the tribunal by the lawyer; (3) offer evidence that the lawyer knows to be false. If a lawyer, the lawyer’s client, or a witness called by the lawyer, has offered material evidence and the lawyer comes to know of its falsity, the lawyer shall take reasonable remedial measures, including, if necessary, disclosure to the tribunal. A lawyer may refuse to offer evidence, other than the testimony of a defendant in a criminal matter, that the lawyer reasonably believes is false; (b) A lawyer who represents a client in an adjudicative proceeding and who knows that a person intends to engage, is engaging or has engaged in criminal or fraudulent conduct related to the proceeding shall take reasonable remedial measures, including, if necessary, disclosure to the tribunal,; (c) The duties stated in paragraphs (a) and (b) continue to the conclusion of the proceeding, and apply even if compliance requires disclosure of information otherwise protected by Rule 1.6.
And under Mass.R.Prof.C. 8.4(c, d, h. It is professional misconduct for a lawyer to: (c) engage in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation; (d) engage in conduct that is prejudicial to the administration of justice; (h) engage in any other conduct that adversely reflects on his or her fitness to practice law.
The Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) reviews the Board’s decisions in part for constitutional error, see Mass.Gen.L. ch. 30A, Sec. 14(7), and is permitted to gather evidence “in cases of alleged irregularities in procedure before the agency [when those irregularities are] not shown in the record.” Mass.Gen.L. ch. 30A, Sec. 14(5). The Court may look beyond the record if it appears the agency deliberately or negligently excluded documents that may have been adverse to its decision.
On a writ of certiorari, the court’s review “is confined to the record and is for the purpose of correcting legal error, [and therefore] the inquiry about the presence or absence of genuine issues of material fact, germane to summary judgment procedure, is inappropriate. . . . [The reviewing court] need only inquire whether the commission’s decision was ‘legally tenable and supported by substantial evidence on the record as a whole.”‘ Gloucester v. Civil Serv. Comm’n, 408 Mass. 292 , 297 (1990), quoting Commissioner of Health & Hosps. of Boston v. Civil Serv. Comm’n, 23 Mass. App. Ct. 410 , 411 (1987). See G.L.c. 31, s. 2 (b); Mayor of Revere, supra at 319-322.
Fraud is distinguished from negligence, ignorance, and error by virtue of the fact that it is intentional; involving some level of calculation. Negligence is: “the failure to use such care as a reasonably prudent and careful person would use under similar circumstances.” In a professional context, it is defined as: “conduct which falls below the standard established by law for the protection of others against unreasonable risk of harm… it is characterized chiefly by inadvertence, thoughtlessness, inattention, and the like.”. Fraud, in contrast, is not accidental in nature, nor is it unplanned. Those who commit fraud know what they are doing and are deliberate in their efforts. They are also aware that it is unethical, illegal, or otherwise improper.
Fraudulent intent is established by examining the documentation of decisions and behaviors associated with those under suspicion. As explained in Coenen: “Manipulation of documents and evidence is often indicative of such intent. Innocent parties don’t normally alter documents and conceal or destroy evidence.”
As explained in Black’s Law Dictionary, fraud is an intentional distortion of facts and truth for the purposes of inducing another to give up something of value that they possess or to relinquish a legal right that they might otherwise retain. It is additionally defined as a “false presentation of a matter of fact whether by words or by conduct, by false or misleading allegations or by concealment of that which should have been disclosed which deceives and is intended to deceive another.”
I believe it is safe to conclude that the parties here participated in fraud.
The “litigation-packet” did not merely show “chain-of-custody” issues but forensic fraud. Misrepresenting invalid forensic test results as valid is the definition of forensic fraud. Ms. Stoller should have immediately assessed the “clear-weight” of this evidence, entered it into the docket for reconsideration and given me an opportunity to be heard. She did not.
The Federation of State Medical Board Policy specifically requires strict “chain of custody.” She violated the Board’s very own standards and then blocked me from returning to practice by putting barriers in place, refusing to allow independent evaluations and protracting the time –drawing this out in order to cause as much damage as possible to my family and me.
Mr. Bertram alleges PHS has not committed any crimes because the agency has not been charged with any crimes. This is logical fallacy. They have not been charged with any crimes because the very agencies capable of charging them with crimes are ignoring or otherwise overlooking them for various reasons. Furthermore, If I see someone being stabbed in the back I can reasonably conclude it is a crime. Colluding with a laboratory to intentionally misrepresent laboratory data is laboratory fraud and covered under Title 18 of the United States Criminal Code (Wire fraud 18 USC 1343, False Statements 18 USC 1001, Conspiracy 18-USC 371, False Claims 18-USC 287 and Obstruction of Justice 18-USC 1505). I believe all of these are applicable here. In addition Dr. Sanchez violated M.G.L 156 (B) Section 69 by making false statements to a state agency.
PHS has convinced the Board not to “second-guess” their decisions and apparently the Board has convinced state AGOs to not “second-guess” theirs; each presupposing the integrity of the individuals and validity of the decisions of the agencies in question. As a result complaints by doctors of serious crimes and abuse are ignored. Fact and truth do not matter as the agencies blindly support one-another. This removes all aspects of accountability including answerability and justification for one’s actions. It is a flawed system.
In the past the SJC has overturned the Board’s decisions on due process grounds, see, e.g., Morris v. Board of Reg. in Medicine, 405 Mass. 103, 110, 539 N.E.2d 50, 54 (1989) (vacating Board decision because proceedings “denied [the physician] fairness in a due process sense.”).
This interference with the administration of Justice, abuse of authority and denial of constitutional rights warrant the Board Orders be reversed, vacated and corrected. “The touchstone of due process is protection of the individual against arbitrary action of government.” (Wolff v. McDonnell, 418 U.S. 539, 558 (1974). “[i]n a just society those who govern, as well as those who are governed, must obey the law.” (United States v. Leon, 104 S. Ct. 3430, 3457 (1984) (Stevens, J., dissenting).
The Courts have held that the Massachusetts and Federal Administrative Procedure Acts require both the agency and the court to consider the entire record, including testimony given at the hearing. In Friends of Edgartown Great Pond v. DEP, 446 Mass. 830, 845 (2006), the SJC recognized that the agency must consider the hearing evidence, finding the agency hearing complied with the Administrative Procedure Act requirements because “the record illustrates that over the course of the five-day hearing, the administrative law judge carefully considered all of the relevant evidence.”
The record compiled here illustrates that over the course of four years the Board not only failed to carefully consider any of the relevant evidence but most likely never saw any of it.
Our Constitution mandates that level of legal process due to reflect “respect enforced by law for that feeling of just treatment which has been evolved through centuries of Anglo-American constitutional history and civilization.” Joint Anti-Fascist Refugee Comm. v. McGrath, 341 U.S. 123, 162, 71 S.Ct. 624, 95 L.Ed. 817 (1951) (Frankfurter, J., concurring)
Ms. Stoller violated multiple professional regulations, ethics and the law in an ongoing campaign in which she blocked the administration of justice. By concealing the truth she prevented both exculpatory evidence favorable to my case and detrimental to the opposing party (involving misconduct and crimes from ever coming to light. It is quite clear the full Board never saw these documents. The fact that the latest Board action did not have any of the documents or petitions submitted over the past year is prima facie evidence of Fraud on the Court. Ms. Stoller needs to be held accountable and I am requesting the SJC uses whatever power it has available to make certain this occurs. Ms. Stoller needs to be disciplined for her actions and this discipline needs to be commensurate with her crime. In this case nothing less then disbarment and criminal charges would fit that bill.
In the Matter of Michael L Langan, M.D.
ON PETITION FOR A WRIT OF CERTIORARI (SJC-2015-0267)
SUPREME JUDICIAL COURT FOR THE COMMONWEALTH
MOTION TO DECIDE THE MATTER ON THE PAPERS DUE TO INTENTIONAL CONCEALMENT OF KEY DOCUMENTS AND “FRAUD ON THE COURT”
The Administrative Record filed by the Board and Assistant Attorney General Bryan Bertram’s oppositional statements suggest that the Director of the Board’s Physician Health and Compliance Unit, Attorney Debra Stoller has been interfering with the administration of justice by suppressing documentation provided as key evidence and the petitionary arguments accompanying them. The amount of missing information is profound and in review of all of the documents including Board Orders and the Board’s oppositional response to my complaint it is evident that the documents were concealed from the full Board. Mr. Bertram’s arguments are based on a very limited record as both exculpatory documents supporting my position and documents indicating misconduct by PHS were intentionally blocked by attorney Deb Stoller in violation of professional regulation consistent with Fraud on the Court. She engaged in misrepresentation, concealment and other misconduct in interference with the administration of justice.
Fraud on the court occurs when the judicial machinery itself has been tainted, such as when an attorney, who is an officer of the court, is involved in the perpetration of a fraud or makes material misrepresentations to the court. Fraud upon the court makes void the orders and judgments of that court. In Bulloch v. United States, 763 F.2d 1115, 1121 (10th Cir. 1985), the court stated “Fraud upon the court is fraud which is directed to the judicial machinery itself and is not fraud between the parties or fraudulent documents, false statements or perjury. … It is where the court or a
member is corrupted or influenced or influence is attempted or where the judge has not performed his judicial function — thus where the impartial functions of the court have been directly corrupted.” Ms. Stoller has in fact violated:
Mass.R.Prof.C. 8.4(c, d, h). Misconduct. It is professional misconduct for a lawyer to: (c) engage in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation; (d) engage in conduct that is prejudicial to the administration of justice; (h) engage in any other conduct that adversely reflects on his or her fitness to practice law.
Mass.R.Prof.C. 3.4(c). Fairness to Opposing Party and Counsel. A lawyer shall not: (c) knowingly disobey an obligation under the rules of a tribunal except for an open refusal based on an assertion that no valid obligation exists;
Rules of Professional Conduct Rule 3.4: Fairness to Opposing Party and Counsel
A lawyer shall not:
(a) unlawfully obstruct another party’s access to evidence or unlawfully alter, destroy, or conceal a document or other material having potential evidentiary value. A lawyer shall not counsel or assist another person to do any such act;
(b) falsify evidence, counsel or assist a witness to testify falsely, or offer an inducement to a witness that is prohibited by law;
(c) knowingly disobey an obligation under the rules of a tribunal except for an open refusal based on an assertion that no valid obligation exists;
(d) in pretrial procedure, make a frivolous discovery request or fail to make reasonably diligent effort to comply with a legally proper discovery request by
On March 9, 2015 an Affidavit was filed with this Court (Affidavit of Michael Langan in Support of Motion for Relief Pursuant to Earlier Court Order) because Attorney Deb Stoller refused to schedule a hearing despite this Court’s request that she do so. In this Affidavit I outline the multiple unwarranted and unjustified delays and state “my legitimate concern is that the Board will simply ignore my most recent January 20, 2015 Petition for Re-instatement. My fears are well grounded as the Board has engaged in a persistent pattern of ignoring my every reasonable effort at trying to be re-instated; and the board has abused the administrative law process to accomplish this. It was only after this Affidavit was filed with this Court that Ms. Stoller even put me on the schedule.
It appears my fears were indeed well grounded as they actually did ignore my January 20, 2015 petition. It appears the April 16, 2015 Board Hearing was simply a “sham review” to satisfy this Court’s request.
The Administrative Record compiled for the April 16, 2015 Board Hearing was absent copious relevant documents including the January 20, 2015 Petition on which it was ostensibly based. In fact, the sole petition is close to one year old. Since that time I have submitted five more petitions that are absent. Since that time I have submitted multiple documents and petitions that are not found anywhere in the Board’s record. Although some of the key documents presented to the Board since 2011 are contained therein, there is no index indicating the date they were received and this brings into question when and if these mitigating and even exculpatory documents were ever even considered.
Mr. Bertram’s oppositional statements underscore these violations and bring the abuse of authority and denial of Constitutional rights to a level of outrageousness. Mr. Bertram states “in his most recent petition to the Board to stay the suspension (“January 2015 Petition”), Dr. Langan submitted a report from an independent psychiatric evaluation (favorably opining as to his fitness to practice medicine) satisfying the first condition, but he did not satisfy the Board’s other conditions because he did not propose suitable (or any) monitoring plans with his petition. Instead, Dr. Langan sought to challenge the Board’s findings that he twice previously
violated the LOA even though he never challenged those violations before, and the time to do so has long since passed.” (page 2)
“Dr. Langan had in the past submitted a letter from Dr. Timothy Wilens, dated February 14, 2014, reporting to the Board that to the date of that letter Dr. Langan remained alcohol and substance free. Id at 158. But, that is not evidence that Dr. Langan remained abstinent in the months preceding the January 2015 Petition to the Board.” (page 8)
Mr. Bertram is correct. The February 14, 2014 report from Dr. Wilens does not cover the months preceding the January 2015 Petition to the Board, but the attached letters from Dr. Wilens dated April 24, 2014 and April 3, 2015 certainly do. The January 2015 Petition was heard at an April 16, 2015 Board Hearing and the April 3, 2015 letter from Dr. Wilens states: “I have monitored him (Langan) clinically and over the past year have been ordering and monitoring urine and saliva” toxicology tests and notes he will continue following me. This letter was written 13 days prior to the April 16th Board Hearing but absent from the Administrative Record filed by the Board October 9, 2015. The letter was provided to Board attorney Deb Stoller both by U.S. Postal service and e-mail. Additionally, it was hand delivered with the other supporting documents of my January 2015 Petition to Board attorney Tracy Ottina at the April 16th, 2015 Board Hearing.
The only possible explanation for the absence of this letter from the Administrative Record is that it was intentionally withheld. The fact that Mr. Bertram argues the absence of such documentation was used in the Board’s reasoning process to deny my Petition suggests the Board never saw it.
Due to the limited number of straightforward issues pertaining to my case (i.e. no patient care or other issues that could be used as a pretext)
this rises to the level of a Brady violation. A Brady analysis has three prongs. First, “the evidence at issue must be favorable to the
accused.” Strickler v. Greene, 527 U.S. 263, 281-282, 119 S. Ct. 1936, 144 L. Ed. 2d 286 (1999). Second, it “must have been suppressed by the
state.” Id. at 282, 119 S. Ct. 1936. Third, “prejudice must have
ensued.” The absence of a monitoring plan is the sole issue Mr. Bertram
identifies as being a factor in the Board’s denial of my petition therefore in this context had I provided a monitoring plan my petition would not have been denied. Mr. Bertram goes on to state that I have never challenged the Board’s findings that I violated my Letter of Agreement. The copious documentation I I have provided this court shows I have been challenging these findings since day one and due to the limited number of issues leading to my suspension and the documentary evidence I have provided to Ms. Stoller that is exculpating to me and incriminating for PHS I suspect it was all suppressed.
Ms. Stoller is abusing her position of authority to deny due process and fundamental fairness with the administration of Justice. She is denying Constitutional rights and violating the Rules of Professional Conduct including Mass. R. Prof. C. 3.4(a), (b), (c); 3.3 (a), (b), (c) and 8.4(a), (c), and (d)
Additionally, I have provided evidence that PHS is engaging in crimes making her in violation of Advocate Rule 3.3 Candor Toward The Tribunal which reads:
(a) A lawyer shall not knowingly:
(1) make a false statement of fact or law to a tribunal or fail to correct a false statement of material fact or law previously made to the tribunal by the lawyer;
(3) offer evidence that the lawyer knows to be false. If a lawyer, the lawyer’s client, or a witness called by the lawyer, has offered material evidence and the lawyer comes to know of its falsity, the lawyer shall take reasonable remedial measures, including, if necessary, disclosure to the tribunal. A lawyer may refuse to offer evidence, other than the testimony of a defendant in a criminal matter, that the lawyer reasonably believes is false.
(b) A lawyer who represents a client in an adjudicative proceeding and who knows that a person intends to engage, is engaging or has engaged in criminal or fraudulent conduct related to the proceeding shall take reasonable remedial measures, including, if necessary, disclosure to the
(c) The duties stated in paragraphs (a) and (b) continue to the conclusion of the proceeding, and apply even if compliance requires disclosure of information otherwise protected by Rule 1.6.
In a November 12, 2015 Motion to Enlarge Time to Respond to Petition Mr. Bertram states “… the undersigned Assistant Attorney General discovered that the certified administrative record was potentially incomplete. After conferring with the Board, it was determined that a copy of Dr. Langan’s petition for reconsideration that resulted in the Board order now under review was inadvertently omitted from the record. (The document was also absent from the Board’s internal docket of this proceeding, resulting in the error by the Board’s staff who assembled the record.)
According to the May 7, 2015 Board Order: “The licensee has not submitted any new documentation that contradicts any of the documents cited to above and found in the Board’s February 6, 2013 Order of Suspension. In the absence of such documentation, there is no basis for rescinding the Board’s vote based on this argument.”
In other words, as with Dr. Wilen’s letter, the Board never saw it and the proposition that this was “inadvertent” is implausible.
In addition to Dr. Wilen’s letter, three petitions were filed with the Board of Registration in Medicine in preparation for the April 16, 2015 Board Hearing. These are dated January 20, 2015 and February 20, 2015 and make reference to a September 3, 2014 Petition in which I introduced a recently acquired document from October 4, 2012.
The October 4, 2012 document from United States Drug Testing Labs (USDTL) to Dr. Luis Sanchez reports the invalidity of the confirmatory test from July 2011 and was the result of an investigation by the College of American Pathologists and precedes Dr. Sanchez report to the Board that I was non-compliant by two weeks. It is essentially exculpatory as Sanchez claimed in a written letter to the Board that he had not become cognizant of the invalidity of the test until December 10, 2012 (67-days later) and these contradictory documents in juxtaposition are prima facie evidence of misrepresentation and dishonesty. Sanchez concealed the test revision and reported non-compliance with my monitoring contract to the Board on October 19, 2012, two weeks after he was informed of the tests invalidity.
In fact the Administrative Record submitted by the Board contains just one Petition from May 25, 2014 that was submitted after Dr. Patricia Recupero completed her 87-page report opining I was safe to practice medicine without restriction and documenting the misconduct of PHS . This report as well as other supportive documentation previously provided to the Board from July 2011 to April 2014 the time they were produced was included with the petition (pages 153-180).
The record provides no index of when these documents were received. No timeline exists. They are not acknowledged in the written Board orders and no consideration is given to them in their written opinion. This brings into question whether or not this information was even available at the time of both Board orders. Was this information taken into account at the time it was provided or was it intentionally withheld or discarded at the time?
Due to the profound removal of due process and fundamental fairness as well as the inability of Mr. Bertram to develop an accurate oral argument due to the limited information contained in the official record I respectfully request the Court proceed with judicial review based on the documents.
Michael Langan, M.D. December 9, 2015