Hon. Francisco A. Besosa See Rating Details
District Judge See Comments
Average Rating:4.4 - 13 rating(s)
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*Temperament:   (1=Awful,10=Excellent)
*Scholarship:   (1=Awful,10=Excellent)
*Industriousness:   (1=Not at all industrious,10=Highly industrious)
*Ability to Handle Complex Litigation:    (1=Awful,10=Excellent)
*Punctuality:    (1=Chronic`y Late,10=Always on Time)
*Evenhandedness in Civil Litigation:    (1=Demonstrates Bias,10=Entirely Evenhanded)
*Evenhandedness in Criminal Litigation:   (1=Demonstrates Bias,10=Entirely Evenhanded)
Flexibility In Scheduling   (1=Completely Inflexible,10=Very Flexible)
General Inclination Regarding Bail (1=Pro-Defense,10=Pro-Government)
General Inclination in Criminal Cases, Pre-Trial:   (1=Pro-Defense,10=Pro-Government)
Involvement in Civil Settlement Discussions:   (1=Least Involved,10=Most Involved)
General Inclination in Criminal Cases, Trial:    (1=Pro-Defense,10=Pro-Government)
General Inclination in Criminal Cases, Sentencing:    (1=Most Lenient,10=Most Harsh)
Typical Discount Off Guidelines for Cooperators:    (1=10%,10=100%)
  Items marked with (*) are averaged into the displayed overall rating

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What others have said about Hon. Francisco A. Besosa


Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 21463
This judge is petty and can be quite vindictive. He is the worst federal judge that I have appeared before over the course of four decades of professional litigation.

Formerly an undistinguished attorney in corporate law firms, this judge clearly favors defendants in civil litigation. He sits on dispositive motions for months, while holding the parties to inflexible pretrial deadlines (e.g. motions in limine, voir dire and jury instructions), only to dismiss long-pending dispositive motions a few days before trial, after the parties have incurred major expenses. His rulings on dispositive motions are frequently reversed in the First Circuit.

In this district, this judge is also well-known for his practice of ruling on non-dispositive motions (e.g., discovery disputes) within minutes of their filing, without giving the other party a chance to respond. Some attorneys in this district have prepared template "Notice of Intent to Respond" motions, for immediate electronic filing, in the hope that they can be filed before the judge rules against them.

If you are lucky enough to get to trial before this judge, you have to contend with his astounding lack of knowledge regarding both substantive law and evidence. He becomes extremely annoyed if you raise a legal issue about which he is uninformed. Rather than taking the time to study and analyze the unfamiliar issue, he rules off-the-cuff and berates counsel, all the while trying to cover up his lack of knowledge.

His opinions and orders are often simply illogical, and ultimately demonstrative of his cavalier attitude with respect to understanding complex issues.

He is also well-known for mistreating attorneys, both during hearings and in docket entry orders and published decisions, in which he scolds lawyers and employs language intended to ridicule them. He reserves his most caustic comments for competent attorneys, given his extreme insecurity and lack of humility about his own lack of knowledge. I believe that he has a misogynist bent -- while he is capable of mistreating just about anyone, he appears to do so with women more often.

Unfortunately, this judge has no redeeming value, except, perhaps, his occasional good humor and the fact that, while on trial, he puts in full days and is punctual.

Criminal Defense Lawyer

Comment #: 19843
This judge was mainly a lackluster bankrruptcy lawyer with very little trial/litigation experience. It shows in the way that he handles his cases. Has a very arrogant temperament.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 19171
Does not have a judicial temperament, seems overwhelmed and to have made up his mind before hearing the evidence. Very obstinate. Definitely pro defendant and pro government.


Comment #: 12003
I wouldn't say Judge Besosa might be the worst judge I've ever seen. I would say that he IS the worst judge I've ever seen. The reviewers who said he doesn't understand pretrial motions and is "very insecure" were spot on. His ability to delay ruling on motions (which he eventually decides in favor of the prosecution) is unparalleled. His best quality is that he is punctual, which is the robing room equivalent of getting a perfect attendance award--and we all know what a piece of crap that award is. Another nugget is that his deputy clerk thinks that a criminal defendant cannot add exhibits after the day of opening statements. He gets a 10 for general inclination in criminal cases, but that's only because a 10 is 100% pro-government. It's one thing to be wrong and be consistent, but when you're only wrong against the defense, that shows how pro-government he really is. Also, I swear I think he's playing brickbreaker on his Blackberry during the trial.

Criminal Defense Lawyer

Comment #: 12002
Shockingly bad. The judge is polite, but has no understanding of the rules of evidence, criminal procedure, constitutional law, pre-trial motions or basic trial practice. I question why he decided to become a judge, as he does not apppear to have any intellectual curiosity about the law or interests in learning to be a better judge or any concern with avoiding reversal (as he has a reversal rate below 60%). His Court is the Puerto Rican Star Chamber.

Criminal Defense Lawyer

Comment #: 8511
He has excellent judicial temperment. He is inept in criminal cases. However, he does allow the attorneys to try their own cases, without improper interference, once the trial begins. Pre-trial motion practice is difficult because he simply does not understand that it is not necessarily correct just because the prosecutor says it is.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 7909
Very pro-defendant in civil matters. Will ambush litigators in hearings. Very insecure.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 7422
Generally a no-nonsense judge who understands how to move civil cases to resolution. May show slight bias towards the defense in some cases, as he mostly represented defendants in civil litigation. In the one case I tried before him, he took an inordinate amount of time to resolve the defendants' post-trial motions. Otherwise, no complaints.

Criminal Defense Lawyer

Comment #: 3879
He appears as a fair and evenhanded judge, we hope the influence of others on the bench does not change him.