Howard Scheinberg, Lawyer and 'Buddy' of Embattled Former Circuit Court Judge Ana Gardiner, Gets Flak from Florida Bar

What do judges have under their robes?

The hundreds of calls and texts that onetime Broward prosecutor Howard Scheinberg, rumored to have had a close personal relationship with former Circuit Court Judge Ana Gardiner, suggest that Scheinberg might have found an answer to this age-old mystery.

To be fair, nobody knows for sure whether Scheinberg -- a Scott Rothstein colleague -- and Gardiner had an affair or were just friends(cough, cough), but whatever field research Scheinberg might have conducted socializing with the other side of the bench might get him in trouble with the Florida Bar.

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The Bar discovered probable cause to investigate Scheinberg on charges of violating "the integrity of the profession."

The recent filing doesn't specify how Scheinberg's might have broken the rules, but a bit of context suggests that it might deal with his tight connection to Gardiner, who was once the top criminal judge in the county. Gardiner stepped down from the bench when a judicial oversight committee found that she was misleading about her ties to Scheinberg. She now works in private practice.

Scheinberg, who's also now in private practice, came under scrutiny for being so close to Gardiner, most notably during the Omar Loureiro death penalty case.

Scheinberg, who was trying Loureiro for the state, and Gardiner, who was presiding over the case, were cozily laughing about the trial while they were hanging out at a bar in 2007, according to witnesses. Of course, judges and lawyers aren't supposed to chit-chat about active cases -- that they're handling -- outside of court.

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