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NBC 10 I-Team: Mass. agency moves to suspend former RI representative

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The Massachusetts Board of Bar Overseers is taking steps to suspend Raymond E. Gallison Jr.’s ability to practice law in that state, sources tell the NBC 10 I-Team.

The BBO, which is responsible for investigating and prosecuting complaints of ethical violations brought against Massachusetts lawyers, will file a notice of conviction and request a temporary suspension of Gallison’s law license.

The former house finance committee chair and Rhode Island representative was convicted on nine federal, criminal charges on Thursday including wire fraud, mail fraud, identity theft and filing false tax documents. Those charges stem from Gallison's involvment with the estate of his "good friend" Ray Medley. He faces 111 years in prison (with two years mandatory) and $1.8 million in fines.

During his hearing, Assistant U.S. Attorney Dulce Donovan told the judge Gallison was involved with cashing in at least 94 of Medley's dividend checks, pawing Medley's items, selling Medley's car to a relative and pocketing the money. And when that wasn't enough, she said, Gallison also took money from a nonprofit focused on educating students and used it to pay himself and another person involved in the nonprofit.

The process of a temporary suspension, then suspension is typical with felony convictions and options are fairly limited, according to Constance Vecchione, chief bar counsel with the BBO. One of those options is disbarment.

Gallison could contest the suspension and face a hearing or resign from the Massachusetts Bar on his own.

“It may be he will agree to the sanctions and we won’t need to have a hearing,” Vecchione said. “It may be that Mr. Gallison will decide to throw in the towel.”

“He could agree to resign and then the court says we agree and you are disbarred,” she added. “I hope we’ll get this up to the court this month.”

Gallison faces Judge William Smith for sentencing in June.

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