Plaintiff in Pants Suit Awaits Decision on His Fate

By Joe Holley
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, August 2, 2007; 2:10 PM

The Washington man who filed a $54 million lawsuit over a missing pair of pants must wait a while longer to find out whether he'll continue to serve as a D.C. administrative law judge.

The three-person panel reviewing whether Roy L. Pearson Jr. should be reappointed to his job met for several hours last night, part of the first phase in a two-phase process. The panel will continue working on the content of a letter to Pearson from the commission that oversees administrative law judges.

The letter will give Pearson notice of the commission's concerns. He then has a right to respond in writing and to appear before the commission.

The District's 33 administrative law judges are city employees who hear disputes between a government agency and individuals who have lodged complaints against the agency. Pearson, who has practiced law for 25 years, was appointed to his position in 2005. The job pays $100,512 annually.

Meanwhile, a fundraiser last week for Pearson's adversaries in the missing pants case, Soo Chung and Jin Nam Chung, raised more than $60,000 toward their legal bills. An earlier appeal garnered more than $30,000 for the Chungs, owners of Custom Cleaners and Dry Cleaners in Northeast.

Although the total amount comes close to covering the family's legal expenses, Pearson is expected to file additional appeals. Superior Court Judge Judith Barnoff ruled six weeks ago that the Chungs did not owe Pearson anything.

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