On Monday, July 17, 2023, the Supreme Court of Illinois suspended attorney Michael Francis McClain from practicing law pending further proceedings by the Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission (ARDC).
The case is entitled “In the Matter of Michael Francis McClain” with case no. 031811.
The ARDC filed a petition on May 31 alleging McClain was found guilty by a federal jury of multiple counts of bribery conspiracy and willful falsification of records. The indictment came out of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Northern District of Illinois in November 2020.
According to the ARDC, the charges relate to McClain’s work as a lobbyist and consultant for Commonwealth Edison between 2011 and 2019. He allegedly participated in a scheme to influence a high-ranking elected official in Illinois through jobs, contracts, and payments to the official’s associates.
The petition states the jury found McClain guilty of “one count of bribery conspiracy, four counts of bribery, and four counts of willful record falsification” on May 2, 2023, after a trial. He is scheduled to be sentenced in January 2024.
The ARDC argued McClain’s conduct involved “moral turpitude” and his interim suspension is required to protect the public and the integrity of the legal profession. As justification, they cited previous Illinois Supreme Court rulings that “disbarment is warranted for conduct similar to the conduct here.”
The Court agreed with the ARDC’s petition and suspended McClain under Supreme Court Rule 774(a)(1) which allows interim suspension when an attorney has been formally charged with a crime involving moral turpitude and there is persuasive evidence supporting the charges.
The Order states:
“The rule to show cause that was issued to respondent Michael Francis McClain pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 774 on June 6, 2023, is enforced. Respondent is suspended from the practice of law effective immediately and until further order of the Court..”
Mr. McClain attended St. Louis University, graduating in 1975. He practices in Quincy, Illinois. He is licensed in Illinois. His info can be found on martindale.com.
A copy of the original filing can be found here.