(Updated 1:50 p.m.)
Despite scoring a victory last week at the D.C. Court of Appeals in the case that saw him removed as trustee of a trust set up by a former client, Hogan & Hartson partner Robert Cave has resigned from that post.
In letters of resignation (.pdf) hand delivered to the sons of Cave's late client Colleen Boland on Wednesday, Cave says he considers himself "relieved of my personal commitment as trustee." His resignation will take effect in mid-October.
Boland's sons sued to have Cave removed as trustee in 2006, saying that he wasted their inheritance by continuing to seek payment of court-ordered judgments against their father Frank Benevento II.
On Sept. 11, the D.C. Court of Appeals kicked D.C. Superior Court Senior Judge Eugene Hamilton's 2008 decision to remove Cave as trustee back to probate court, saying that an evidentiary hearing was needed before it could be determined whether Cave violated the terms of Boland's declaration of trust.
Boland's sons have also sued Cave and Hogan in two different courts for malpractice and breach of fiduciary duty. The most recent lawsuit, filed in D.C. Superior Court last month, seeks $120 million in damages.
Throughout the litigation against him, Cave has maintained that he was simply carrying out the directives given to him by Boland before her death in 2006.
Dale Cooter, a name partner at Washington's Cooter, Mangold, Tompert & Karas said Cave's resignation was a tactical retreat.
"The court of appeals opinion did not exonerate Mr. Cave of any allegation of misconduct. It left Judge Hamilton's decision that he needed to be removed in place," Cooter said. "The recent letter of resignation is designed to extricate himself from the difficult position he is in without public disclosure. We're happy this resignation has been made public."
Update: In an e-mail, Cave's lawyer William McDaniel, a Baltimore-based solo practitioner, said, "The Court of Appeals vindicated Mr. Cave, ruling that the Probate Court had no factual basis to remove Mr. Cave as trustee of the Colleen Boland Family Trust. In light of the wild and false allegations that the Estate and Trust have made in the latest suit, Mr. Cave believed it appropriate that he resign as trustee. He did not do so to avoid litigating the outlandish allegations against him, as those allegations all will be litigated in that new case. That litigation, too, will reveal that these allegations have no basis in reality."