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Cecilia Maria Altonaga
Altonaga.jpg
Judge on United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida
Incumbent
Assumed office
May 7, 2003
Nominated by George W. Bush
Preceded by Shelby Highsmith
Personal details
Born (1962-12-26) December 26, 1962 (age 52)
Baltimore, Maryland
Alma mater Florida International University

Cecilia Maria Altonaga (born December 26, 1962) is a Florida United States district court judge. She is the first Cuban-American woman to be appointed as a federal judge in the United States.

Biography[edit]

Altonaga was born in Baltimore, Maryland, and is an alumnus of Florida International University, where she received her B.A. in 1983. She graduated from the Yale Law School in 1986. She worked as an attorney in the Miami Dade County Attorney's Office from 1986–1987, and then served as a law clerk to Edward B. Davis of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida from 1987-88 before returning to the County Attorney's Office until 1996. In 1996, Governor Lawton Chiles appointed her as a County Court Judge on Florida's Eleventh Judicial Circuit Court. In 1999, she was elevated to Circuit Court Judge in that district by Governor Jeb Bush.

She was nominated for a seat on U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida by George W. Bush on January 15, 2003, to a seat vacated by Shelby Highsmith. She was confirmed by the United States Senate on May 6, 2003, and received her commission the following day. During her time on the federal bench, Altonaga has been noted for her strong support of the recently created Florida International University College of Law, having served as the keynote speaker in the 2004 Convocation, judged several moot court competitions, and employed FIU law students as summer interns.

Supreme Court speculation[edit]

In July 2005, following the retirement of Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, Judge Altonaga's name was raised as a potential George W. Bush Supreme Court candidate, a position for which she was promoted by Florida's Hispanic community. However, it would be a very rare occurrence for a sitting District Court judge to be appointed to the Supreme Court. At 43, Altonaga was younger than most other Hispanics or women who were being mentioned as possible nominees, which might have made her a more attractive choice to the President. However, President Bush went through several other nominees, and nominated Judge Samuel Alito for the position.

Notable Rulings[edit]

On June 14, 2007, Altonaga ruled that US Sugar Corporation's practice of pumping untreated wastewater into Lake Okeechobee was in violation of the Clean Water Act. Largely as a result of this decision, on June 25, 2008 the state of Florida announced plans to purchase 300 square miles (780 km2) of land controlled by US Sugar, which will be used to restore vital water flow between Lake Okeechobee and the Everglades National Park, helping to ensure its survival in the face of competition for water from surrounding development.[1]

She also presided over the trial of Charles McArthur Emmanuel, son of former Liberian dictator Charles Taylor, for torture.[2]

In September 2006, Sheikh Mohammed was accused of encouraging the abduction and enslavement of thousands of boys for use as jockeys in camel races. A class-action suit was filed in the state of Florida in the United States.[3][4][5][6] In July 2007, Judge Altonaga granted a motion to dismiss the suit because none of the involved parties resided in the United States.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Schor, Elana (2008-06-24). "Florida to buy 187,000 farmland acres to preserve Everglades". Guardian. Retrieved 2008-06-25. 
  2. ^ Anderson, Curt (2009-01-09). "Taylor's son gets 97 years in prison for torture". Associated Press. Retrieved 2009-01-09. [dead link]
  3. ^ Gumbel, Andrew (2006-09-15). "Dubai princes accused of masterminding trade in jockey slaves". The Independent (London). Retrieved 2010-05-13. 
  4. ^ "Dubai's ruler accused of slavery". BBC News. 2006-09-14. Retrieved 2010-05-13. 
  5. ^ A Dubai Leader Faces Charges of Enslavement - September 14, 2007 - The New York Sun
  6. ^ Cover Bio from Current Biography Monthly Magazine - April 2008

Sources[edit]

External links[edit]

Legal offices
Preceded by
Shelby Highsmith
Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida
2003–present
Incumbent

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cecilia_Altonaga — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.
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184 news items

New York Daily News

New York Daily News
Wed, 21 Jan 2015 18:03:45 -0800

U.S. District Judge Cecilia Altonaga, however, denied Collazo's request for documents from Lewis Tein, the firm that currently represents the Biogenesis founder, regarding communications between MLB and law enforcement agencies about Bosch. Altonaga ...

MiamiHerald.com

MiamiHerald.com
Sun, 11 Jan 2015 11:42:24 -0800

On Friday, U.S. District Judge Cecilia Altonaga issued a limited order, requiring MLB to hand over all financial records regarding its payments to Bosch and other witnesses. Quintero noted that under two agreements, Major League Baseball has paid ...

New York Daily News

New York Daily News
Tue, 30 Dec 2014 15:48:45 -0800

Now Velazquez is headed for the slammer. U.S. District Court Judge Cecilia Altonaga sentenced Velazquez to 30 months in prison Tuesday. Velazquez, who pleaded guilty in October to supplying testosterone to Bosch's now-shuttered anti-aging clinic, must ...
 
Philly.com
Wed, 31 Dec 2014 00:03:45 -0800

Jorge Velazquez told U.S. District Judge Cecilia Altonaga in Miami that he was sorry for what happened. Velazquez admitted being a drug supplier for Anthony Bosch, who ran the now-closed Biogenesis of America clinic in Coral Gables. Bosch and four ...
 
FOX 13 Tampa Bay, WTVT-TV
Tue, 30 Dec 2014 12:35:47 -0800

Jorge Velazquez told U.S. District Judge Cecilia Altonaga Tuesday that he is sorry for what happened. The Miami Herald reports the judge agreed to let him surrender to authorities on Jan. 12. Velazquez admitted being a drug supplier for Anthony Bosch ...
 
South Bend Tribune
Wed, 31 Dec 2014 03:06:25 -0800

Jorge Velazquez told U.S. District Judge Cecilia Altonaga in Miami Tuesday that he is sorry for what happened. The Miami Herald reported the judge agreed to let him surrender to authorities on Jan. 12. Velazquez admitted being a drug supplier for ...
 
Miami Today
Wed, 22 Feb 2012 07:38:35 -0800

As the first Cuban-American woman to serve as a federal judge, Cecilia Altonaga is breaking new ground. "Every time I achieved what I set out to do I saw myself not only as a Cuban-American, but as a woman opening doors," she said. "It's important for ...

La Estrella de Panamá

La Estrella de Panamá
Tue, 30 Dec 2014 21:19:32 -0800

Jorge Velázquez dijo a la juez de distrito de Estados Unidos Cecilia Altonaga que lamenta lo sucedido. El periódico The Miami Herald informó que la jueza le permitió entregarse a las autoridades el 12 de enero. Velázquez aceptó que fue el distribuidor ...
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