MJ vs Bubba the Love Sponge case not close to being over

5:35 PM, Jan 30, 2013   |    comments
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Bubba the Love Sponge Clem speaks with reporters after a jury found him not guilty of defaming radio rival Todd "MJ" Schnitt.


Tampa, FL -- Even with a verdict in the Todd "MJ" Schnitt versus Bubba the Love Sponge Clem trial, the case is still far from over.

Experts say the accusations lobbed in court last week and what followed could lead to criminal charges, a state bar investigation as well as the judge exercising his own civil contempt power.

"There's going to be repercussions. There was some misconduct in this. How long it takes to play-out just remains to be seen," said former federal prosecutor Steve Crawford.

See also: Shock-jock trial delivers even more shocks

Crawford says there are a host of issues officials could look at once the trial is over.

"Well I mean attorney misconduct, of candor to the court, attempt to pervert the judicial process- there's just all kinds of legal cannons that may have been violated and all of them are going to have to be investigated," Crawford told 10 News on Wednesday.

The Director of Information with the Florida Bar told 10 News they have already opened a file stemming from Phil Campbell's DUI arrest last week. But beyond that, Francine Andía Walker says no other investigations linked to the case have been launched. But she notes that could easily change if someone files a complaint.

Walker issued the following statement Wednesday relating to the state bar and the lawyers involved in the MJ vs Bubba civil case:

"The Florida Bar has a case open on the DUI arrest of Charles P. Campbell Jr. We will not take any action until he is either convicted or otherwise adjudicated.

We have no cases open to investigate any of the allegations in media reports as to the conduct of Stephen Diaco, Joseph Diaco and Adam Filthaut. The Bar can open a case if we feel we have sufficient information to do so. We have received no sworn complaints regarding the allegations or circumstances from any of the involved parties including the lawyers who can file complaints against other lawyers.

Once a complaint is filed, the initial investigation and evaluation by the Bar will take approximately 45-60 days."

The Tampa Police Department also says it has no other investigations relating to the MJ vs Bubba trial besides Campbell's DUI arrest. But again, a spokesperson says that could change if someone files a complaint.

Crawford points out the judge in this case also has civil contempt power, which means he could conduct his own hearing as to what has happened in his courtroom. Crawford says the judge also has the power to hand down his own sentence if he finds any wrongdoing.

"Now you can only sentence someone up to five months and 29-days in jail, but up to that point criminal justice system doesn't kick in, it's a civil procedure and the judge just may do that."

When asked if they planned on filing either a complaint with TPD or with the state bar, MJ's legal team would only say they are going to "continue to advocate for Mr. and Mrs. Schnitt's rights."

Previous stories on the MJ vs. Bubba the Love Sponge Trial:

Was MJ's attorney Phil Campbell set up?

MJ lawyers call for mistrial after lawyer Phil Campbell's arrest, judge allows lawsuit to continue... for now

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