Preate’s past speaks to Fumo’s future

    Once former state Sen. Vincent Fumo is released from federal prison, he’ll face an uphill climb if he wants to practice law again.

    Former State Senator Vincent Fumo’s life is tightly scripted for the next four years. He’ll spend them inside a federal prison in Kentucky, serving time for fraud and corruption.

    Once Fumo is released, he’ll face an uphill climb if he wants to practice law again. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court suspended Fumo’s law license late last month. He’s been a member of the Pennsylvania Bar since 1972.

    And while Fumo hasn’t been disbarred, he’ll be hard-pressed to get his license back. Take it from someone with a unique understanding of Fumo’s situation. Former Pennsylvania Attorney General Ernie Preate served 14 months in prison on a mail fraud conviction in the 1990’s. Preate surrendered his law license before his guilty plea, but did get it back after doing his time.

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    Preate:It’s not unheard of, but it is unusual. I have to tell you. I’m an unusual case. It means being able to accept responsibility. It means being able to accept the importance of the law license.

    Preate eventually got his license back only after years of hearings and testimony on his behalf. He’s been practicing law in Scranton for the last 10 years.

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