Stuart attorney disbarred following guilty please to drug paraphernalia charge

By Karen Kidd | Jul 2, 2018

TALLAHASSEE (Florida Record) — Stuart attorney Nathaniel Bundy Burke has been disbarred following a May 31 Florida Supreme Court after his no contest plea to a drug paraphernalia charge, according to a recent announcement by The Florida Bar.

TALLAHASSEE (Florida Record) — Stuart attorney Nathaniel Bundy Burke has been disbarred following a May 31 Florida Supreme Court after his no contest plea to a drug paraphernalia charge, according to a recent announcement by The Florida Bar.

"Burke pleaded no contest in court to possession of drug paraphernalia," the state bar said in its June 29 announcement of the discipline and the Supreme Court's order. "He had prior disciplinary offenses and had been suspended since Nov. 1, 2017, for failure to pay his annual bar membership fees."

In its single-page order, the high court approved the uncontested referee's report before disbarring Burke and ordering him to pay more than $2,746 in costs. Burke has been administratively suspended since November, according to the referee's report.

In Florida court orders are not final until after time to file a rehearing motion expires. Filing such a motion would not alter the effective date of Burke's disbarment.

Burke was admitted to the bar in Florida on Nov. 21, 1991, according to his profile at the state bar website. No prior discipline before the state bar is listed on Burke's state bar profile but he was reinstated following an August 2010 state Supreme Court order, which also placed him on three years' conditional probation.

Burke had been placed on the inactive list in August 2006 for incapacity not related to misconduct "as a direct result of his substance abuse," said a referee's report at the time. "Thereafter, Burke was suspended for three years by order of the Supreme Court of Florida dated April 19, 2007, for being arrested three times during a one year period on various criminal charges that stemmed from his alcohol and drug abuse. Petitioner also failed to appear in court for several clients due to his incapacitation."

In its formal complaint against Burke filed in September 2017 after Burke's no contest plea the previous June and his sentence to a day in jail with credit for a day already served, in addition to costs and fines, prosecutors added a felony charge of attempting to purchase crack cocaine. Allegations in that case stemmed from Burke's arrest in January 2016 for allegedly attempting to purchase crack cocaine from an undercover police officer, according to the complaint.

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