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From jail to Yale: Felon faces scrutiny to be lawyer

China Daily | Updated: 2017-08-10 08:28

HARTFORD, Connecticut-A felon who graduated from Yale Law School and won acclaim as a poet is being asked by a committee to prove his "good moral character" before he is allowed to practice law.

Reginald Betts passed the state bar exam in February, but a panel of judges and lawyers that decides who joins the state bar flagged his file because of three felony convictions for a carjacking he committed two decades ago as a teenager.

The Connecticut Bar Examining Committee will investigate and hold a hearing on Betts' bid for admission to the bar. Like most states, Connecticut does not prohibit felons from becoming attorneys, but a felony conviction creates a presumption that the applicant lacks "good moral character and/or fitness to practice law." Such applicants must prove otherwise by "clear and convincing evidence.".

From jail to Yale: Felon faces scrutiny to be lawyer

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