Thomas Henry Merdzinski is disbarred member of the California Bar and was admitted 7th May 1991. Thomas graduated from Western State University COL and is now based in Riverside.

Lawyer Information

NameThomas Henry Merdzinski
First Admitted7 May 1991 (28 years, 7 months ago)
StatusDisbarred
Bar Number152148

Schools

Law SchoolWestern State Univ COL (Fullerton CA)
Undergraduate SchoolArizona St Univ (Tempe AZ)

Address

Current Address79321 Bowden Dr
Bermuda Dunes, CA 92203
Current CountyRiverside
Current DistrictDistrict 4
Map

History

25 June 2011Disbarred (8 years, 5 months ago)
20 October 2008Not Eligible To Practice Law in CA (11 years, 1 month ago)
19 October 2008Inactive (11 years, 1 month ago)
7 May 1991Admitted to The State Bar of California (28 years, 7 months ago)

Disciplinary and Related Actions

25 June 201108-C-13180
Disbarment (Disbarred)
5 February 201108-C-13180
Ordered inactive (Not Eligible To Practice Law in CA)
18 February 200909-Q-10661
Vol.inactive(tender of resign.w/charges) (Not Eligible To Practice Law in CA)
20 October 200808-C-13180
Interim suspension after conviction (Not Eligible To Practice Law in CA)

Discipline Summaries

June 25, 2011

Child porn possession leads to disbarment

A Riverside County attorney who was convicted of possession of child pornography after his arrest as part of a widespread federal investigation in 2008 was disbarred. THOMAS HENRY MERDZINSKI [#152148], 61, lost his license June 25. The Supreme Court rebuffed his effort to resign from the State Bar in 2010 and sent the case back to the bar for further prosecution. He stipulated to disbarment.

Merdzinski was sentenced to 51 months in prison and was ordered to register as a sex offender after he reached a plea agreement with the government. Although he faced a possible 10-year sentence, prosecutors sought reduced time in exchange for his guilty plea.

He was one of 52 people arrested by federal and local authorities in 2008 as part of an investigation of defendants who allegedly used peer-to-peer networks to exchange graphic images and video.

According to the U.S. Attorney’s office, Merdzinski had stored more than 600 sexually explicit photos and videos of minors on seven computer hard drives. “As (the) defendant knew, the images contained visual depictions of prepubescent children engaged in sadistic and masochistic acts, such as adult males engaged in intercourse with prepubescent girls, some as young as infants,” according to the plea agreement.

Several images were shipped and transported in either interstate or foreign commerce and some victims were known to law enforcement.

The arrests capped an eight-month investigation led by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the FBI, with assistance from the Secret Service and other agencies. It marked the first time peer-to-peer users who share child pornography were targeted as part of a coordinated sweep.

All those arrested were charged with possession of child pornography, some with additional charges such as production of child pornography and committing crimes while registered sex offenders.

Law enforcement used sophisticated computer programs to track down computers on which child pornography was stored and made available to others through peer-to-peer networks, an increasingly popular method of sharing files on the Internet. According to law enforcement, computer users can join networks that allow sharing by using software programs such as Limewire, often for no charge.

Law enforcement used the same networks to identify individuals who were sharing child pornography.

The suspects arrested in the investigation lived in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura counties.

Merdzinski was placed on interim suspension in October 2008 and on involuntary inactive status last February. He failed to comply with rule 9.20 of the California Rules of Court by not submitting to the State Bar Court a declaration that he had notified his clients, opposing counsel and other pertinent parties that he was disciplined. Failure to do so is grounds for disbarment.

He was incarcerated in the Federal Correctional Institution in Anthony, N.M.