Judge Genece Brinkley has lawyered up.
After sentencing Meek Mill to two to four years in prison last year, the judge has faced a wave of criticism as well as a number of potentially career-ending allegations. Meek’s legal team claims Brinkley used her power and authority to retaliate against the rapper because he refused to comply to her requests to mention her in a song. The judge’s professional ethics were further challenged when newly surfaced documents suggested she had violated the Judicial Code of Conduct by using city resources and courthouse staff for personal business matters.
Brinkley is now firing back.
Her new attorney A. Charles Peruto Jr. calls the allegations baseless, and has threatened to file a defamation lawsuit against Meek’s team and various supporters.
“What you have is an organization—extremely wealthy—who wants to attack a sitting judge. … It’s ‘How much money can you throw at a case and make your allegations stick?’” he told the Philadelphia Inquirer. “Her reputation has been severely damaged within the last month. We absolutely believe she has an absolute solid [defamation] case.”
Meek’s lawyer doesn’t seem too worried about the threat. Attorney Joe Tacopina has responded in the following statement:
We look forward to a lawsuit from the judge and taking this to court where she will have to be deposed under oath and speak the truth. We are not shocked that Judge Brinkley has resorted to this tactic. She has filed 29 lawsuits, including lawsuits against the Hershey Estate and the Hershey Entertainment Resorts Company in Philadelphia Municipal Court, settled for $15,000 and claimed “trauma,” sleeplessness, “flashbacks,” and “nightmares” that she blamed on the hotel, where she had stayed for a 2012 judicial conference. Brinkley claimed that her emotional distress was triggered when she woke up in the middle of the night to find a housekeeper’s name badge in her bed. She also had sued The City of Philadelphia and tenants where she has tried to take advantage by using her title as a judge to intimidate them.
Shortly after Meek’s sentencing, it was reported that the FBI was investigating Brinkley’s “conduct in connection” to the rapper since 2016; however, Peruto insists this is also false.
“If there’s an FBI investigation against Genece Brinkley that concludes she did something wrong,” he said, “I’ll pay them $100,000 out of my own money. It’s a lie.”
It’s also worth noting that Pertuo visited Meek in prison last year “to discuss possibly joining his defense team.” Though the attorney wasn’t hired, he insists the interaction had no influence on his decision to represent Brinkley. Nevertheless, this fact has raised more suspicions.
“We won't be intimidated, especially by a lawyer, who visited Meek Mill days after he was sentenced and also called his defense team to try to get hired and offer him his legal services on this matter,” Tacopina said. “Additionally, he has changed his tune regarding his comments about paying $100,000 if the FBI concludes the judge did something wrong—his earlier comments to Law.com were that he would pay 5 years of his salary if the FBI ever investigated the judge. I guess he is withdrawing that bet now.”