It started off as the shock jock trial.
Bubba the Love Sponge was sued by Todd “MJ” Schnitt. But the intrigue around the trial grew when Schnitt’s lawyer, Phil Campbell, got picked up for a DUI in January 2013.
The sideshow to the trial has now taken on more serious dimensions as three lawyers with the firm Adams and Diaco, which represented Bubba the Love Sponge, now facing the possibility of getting disbarred.
The Florida Bar has filed a formal complaint with the Florida Supreme Court calling for disciplinary action against Stephen Diaco, Robert Adams and Adam Filthaut.
John Fitzgibbons, who represents Phil Campbell, said the episode was just as it appears in the Florida Bar’s report on the incident: A set up.
The report gives a timeline of events and shows how all the players, including a female employee of the firm and a now former Tampa Police sergeant, worked together to get Phil Campbell arrested.
"These lawyers would never practice law ever again," Fitzgibbons said.
But Greg Kehoe, who is representing the Adams and Diaco firm, insisted his clients did no wrong.
"My clients are going to answer these charges, and I guarantee you they will be vindicated," he said.
But from the outside looking in, Jeffery Swartz, a professor from the Thomas M. Cooley Law School, doesn't agree.
He believes the smoking gun may be on page 37 of the report, where it states the three lawyers deleted their text and voice messages.
"That becomes not only evidence in this particular proceeding and in the investigation of the tribunal that was trying the case, but it's also evidence in Mr. Campbell's DUI case," he said.
A local judge will now take a look at all the evidence and make a recommendation.
The Florida Supreme Court will make a ruling. The process could take more than a year.