‘Rocket docket’ foreclosure access probed | South Florida Business Journal: "The chief justice of the Florida Supreme Court issued a statement Monday, saying he was “deeply concerned” about allegations that some judges have thwarted access to foreclosure court hearings.
Chief Justice Charles Canady was responding to a letter written from the American Civil Liberties Union, the Florida Press Association and other journalism groups that offered evidence some judges had discouraged access to foreclosure hearings.
According to a news release from the ACLU, the letter highlighted a number of reports from around that state that point to a “troubling pattern of foreclosure courts operating behind closed doors, rather than openly as mandated by Florida law.”
Canady said he was directing the Office of the State Courts Administrator to make recommendations concerning appropriate corrective actions.
The letter was based, in part, on an article by Rolling Stone writer Matt Taibbi. Taibbi reported that he had accompanied Jacksonville attorney April Charney to a hearing before Jacksonville Senior Circuit Judge A.C. Soud, and that Soud sent an e-mail to Charney afterward, saying that “we ask that anyone other than a lawyer remain in the lobby,'"