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Auburn Hills, Southfield lawyers suspended

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The State of Michigan Attorney Discipline Board (ADB) has reported the recent suspensions of two local lawyers, Ralph M. Engle, of Auburn Hills, and Josephine A. Powell, of Southfield.

Engle entered a plea of no contest to allegations that he neglected his client's matter; failed to keep his client reasonably informed about the status of a matter and comply promptly with a reasonable request for information; and failed to explain a matter to the extent reasonably necessary to permit his client to make informed decisions about the representation.

Engle and the Grievance Administrator filed a stipulation for a consent order of discipline, which the Attorney Grievance Commission approved and ADB Tri-County Hearing Panel #64 accepted. In accordance with the stipulation of the parties, the panel ordered Engle’s suspension from the practice of law in Michigan for 120 days, retroactive to Jan. 25, 2014, subject to a condition relevant to the established misconduct. The panel also directed Engle to pay costs of $1,000.92.

Powell and the Grievance Administrator also filed a stipulation for a consent order of discipline, which the Attorney Grievance Commission approved and ADB Tri-County Hearing Panel #54 accepted. The stipulation contained Powell’s admission that she had been convicted of theft of government property, a misdemeanor, in violation of 18 USC §641, in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, Case No. 12CR20452-1.

In accordance with the stipulation of the parties, the panel ordered Powell’s suspension from the practice of law in Michigan for four years, effective Feb. 26, 2014. The panel also directed Powell to pay costs of $964.12.

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