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    Pa. chief justice: McCaffery emails had 45 porn videos

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     In this 2011 file photo, Pennsylvania Supreme Court Chief Justice Ronald D. Castille exits the court room  at Philadelphia's historic Old City Hall.(AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

    In this 2011 file photo, Pennsylvania Supreme Court Chief Justice Ronald D. Castille exits the court room at Philadelphia's historic Old City Hall.(AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

    In a remarkable statement released Wednesday, Pennsylvania Supreme Court Chief Justice Ronald Castille said that Justice Seamus McCaffery sent emails to government officials with hundreds of sexually explicit images and dozens of pornographic videos.

    The fact that McCaffery sent some pornographic emails to officials in the state attorney general’s office was already known, and has prompted a review by the state Judicial Conduct Board.

    What’s new is the number of emails, images and videos involved.

    “The number kind of blew me away,” said Lynn Marks, executive director of the reform group Pennsylvanians for Modern Courts. “I had no idea it was that high, and I didn’t realize there were 60 sexually explicit video files.”

    Castille’s statement said that 234 emails “involving McCaffery contained 1,502 sexually explicit images and 60 sexually explicit videos.”

    When duplicate images and videos are weeded out, the statement said, the numbers shrink to 700 to 800 unique images and about 45 unique videos.

    Castille said he met last Friday with a technician from the state attorney general’s office and concluded that McCaffery is the only one of the court’s seven justices to have trafficked in the pornographic emails that were discovered by investigators reviewing the Jerry Sandusky child abuse probe.

    Marks says the emails are very troubling.

    “A sitting judge sending sexually explicit emails to government  accounts certainly doesn’t polish the public perception of the courts,” Marks said in a telephone interview. “If your case comes before a judge, you want to have confidence that the judge is mature, fair, has good judgment and acts with a high level of personal integrity.”

    Marks said McCaffery’s actions may violate the state code of judicial conduct. The state Judicial Conduct Board is investigating the matter, responding to a complaint by Harrisburg activist Gene Stilp.

    McCaffery, a Philadelphia justice once known for presiding over a court at Eagles games to deal with rowdy fans, wasn’t available for comment.

    UPDATED: Thursday, McCaffery issued a statement apologizing and accusing Castille of have a vendetta against him.

    His attorney, Dion Rassias, has said he wonders why emails sent from McCaffery’s private computer deserve so much attention. Castille says the emails were sent by McCaffery to a now-retired agent of the attorney general’s office.

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