Ticket-fixing ex-judge to NJ Supreme Court: Towns ‘look favorably’ on court money-making

A former Monmouth County municipal judge offered varying explanations for running a scheme to rake in extra revenue for towns he worked for as he appeared before the state Supreme Court on Tuesday to argue that his law license should not be revoked.

Judge Richard B. Thompson pleaded guilty to fourth-degree falsifying records in February 2018 after authorities accused him of baselessly converting about 4,000 motor vehicle ticket fines into fines for contempt of court to maximize revenue for towns. Revenue from motor vehicle fines is split evenly between municipalities and the county, but contempt of court proceeds go  entirely to towns.

Appearing before the Supreme Court, which is considering whether to disbar him, Thompson initially defended his actions, saying the contempt of court fines were meant to hold defendants accountable for failing to appear in court and were not about filling town coffers.