NEW IBERIA, La. — The Louisiana Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that New Iberia attorney Shane E. Romero is suspended from practicing law for one year.
According to court records, the disciplinary action comes from formal charges filed against Romero by the Office of Disciplinary Counsel after his 2014 campaign to run for judge of the New Iberia City Court.
During his campaign, Romero paid $1,760 to finance the printing and distribution of a flyer against one of his opponents, Theodore “Trey” Haik III, the court states. The campaign flyer truthfully stated that Haik and his family had received substantial fees for legal work performed for various governmental entities. However, it did not contain the required disclosure identifying Romero as the one who created the flyer.
Romero also failed to disclose on his campaign finance report that he paid to have the flyer printed and distributed.
The Louisiana Board of Ethics then opened an investigation into the origins of the campaign flyer. When the board asked Romero under oath if he was the one behind the flyer. Romero then falsely told investigators that he did not pay for the flyer.
The board later filed a disciplinary complaint against respondent and also made a criminal referral to the Iberia Parish District Attorney’s Office, which recused itself from the case and referred it to the Lafourche Parish District Attorney’s Office for prosecution.
On Nov. 10, 2016, Romero pleaded guilty in the 19th Judicial District Court for East Baton Rouge Parish to one misdemeanor count of violating state campaign finance laws by omitting to disclose a required election expenditure.
That court deferred Romero’s sentence for six months and placed him on unsupervised probation for that period.
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