Judges can arbitrate life-altering decisions based purely of personal interests and politics.
The following example shows how judges can gain from their position...
"Insider Trading in LA Superior Court"2012-02-11 by JB Tucker [link]:
The recent scandals in Washington and the passage of legislation to ban congressional “insider” stock trading caused me to unearth an old memo that I’d sent to federal authorities some time ago, because it seemed quite plausible that a Los Angeles Superior Court judge might very well have had advance knowledge of impending stock crashes. Here’s the substance of the memo I composed:
According to Judge xxxxxx x xxxxxxz’s FPPC (Fair Political Practices Commission) Form 700 Statement of Economic Interests dated September 21, 2002 he disposed of an investment in WORLDCOM in June 2002. According to his previous filing dated December 18, 2001, the investment was worth somewhere between $10,000 – $100,000.
Somewhat more intriguing is that for the most part, his entries of investments that were sold off have the exact date of disposition listed. His Worldcom entry merely shows the month and year.
A website with extensive public documents on the Worldcom scandal listed three documents of interest that have since come to light in the month of June 2002: two internal memos dated June 17, 2002 and another on June 24,2002, in which people were discussing the firm’s shaky financial situation. The timing of the Judge’s disposition of this stock seems to raise a reasonable suspicion of insider leaks.
The Form 700’s are filed at the Los Angeles County Registrar of Voters office in Norwalk as well as with the Secretary of State and FPPC in Sacramento.
Amongst his many other investments, the Judge also made two purchases of Tyco stock on January 22, 2002 and January 23, 2002. Haven’t looked extensively at that issue yet.