SE Texas Record

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Daughter names Florida judge in federal lawsuit over elderly father's guardianship

Lawsuits

By David Yates | Jan 8, 2020

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(Jan. 8, 2020) A concerned daughter sued a Florida state judge in federal court over civil rights violations and alleged fraud upon the court after her elderly father became a ward of the State under guardianship.

The Plaintiff daughter Lesa Martino named the Honorable Hillsborough County Judge Daryl M. Manning in a petition filed in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida.

“Martino was not notified of the hearing for summary judgement,” states the Plaintiff Martino in her complaint. “The hearing took place without any testimony from Martino. There was no court reporter and there was no evidence entered at the hearing.”

The Defendant, Honorable Judge Manning, responded to Martino’s federal lawsuit on January 7, 2020 with a Motion to Dismiss the claims against him.

“The Complaint is barred by judicial, qualified, and Eleventh Amendment immunity,” wrote the state of Florida Assistant Attorney General Brittany Quinlan on behalf of the Honorable Judge Manning. “Judges are entitled to immunity when acting in their judicial capacity unless they acted in clear absence of all jurisdiction.”

The Plaintiff daughter, who holds a doctorate in pharmacy, complains there were First, Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment violations, according to a press release.

“Manning was presented evidence that a notice of hearing was not provided to Martino and allowed deprivation of property without due process,” alleges Martino who, in a separate lawsuit, is among a group of adult children suing the state of Florida in Florida Northern District Court. But Stone et al v. DeSantis et al, alleging theft, trafficking and abuse of the elderly under court appointed guardianship, was dismissed without prejudice on December 9, 2019.

Martino v. Manning has been assigned to the Honorable Mary S. Scrivens who was nominated by former President George W. Bush and confirmed by the Senate in 2008.

“Martino lost rights without a meaningful hearing and opportunity to be heard,” states the Plaintiff in her December 12, 2019 pleading against the Honorable Judge Manning. “She was denied the constitutional protection of the First Amendment by denying her right to exercise her opinion. Martino’s opinions included financial exploitation of her father.”

As previously reported by the Southeast Texas Record, Traci Hudson [Samuel], 51, was reportedly Ronald Thomas Martino’s guardian at the time that Hudson [Samuel] was arrested for allegedly financially exploiting a 92 year old senior citizen named Maurice Myers.

According to a Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office press release, detectives discovered a total of $541,541.12 was transferred from Myers account to accounts owned by Hudson [Samuel], founder of Florida Guardianship Services and President of the Guardian Association of Pinellas County. 

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