TWO FORMER Philadelphia Traffic Court judges pleaded guilty Tuesday to taking part in a ticket-fixing scheme that federal investigators have said was common practice.
H. Warren Hogeland and Kenneth Miller were among the dozen people - including seven other Traffic Court judges - who were charged Jan. 31 in a sweeping indictment.
Hogeland, 75, of Richboro, Bucks County, pleaded guilty to conspiracy and mail fraud.
According to court documents, he admitted to regularly receiving "consideration requests" from the staffs of fellow Traffic Court judges Michael Sullivan, Willie Singletary and Thomasine Tynes - all of whom have been indicted.
Hogeland amended or dismissed tickets without the cases being called into court.
He also took care of a $126 speeding ticket that police had given to Miller's son in 2010, the documents show.
Miller, 76, of Brookhaven, Delaware County, pleaded guilty to mail fraud.
According to court documents, he called in a favor in 2011 for the son of an acquaintance, after the son got a $126 ticket for making an improper left turn that caused a traffic accident.
Hogeland and Miller are scheduled to be sentenced May 24. The U.S. Attorney's Office said sentencing guidelines call for a range of zero to six months in prison.
Miller could face an even-lesser penalty. His plea agreement calls for him to testify at future hearings, and for prosecutors to "make a motion" to depart from the sentencing guidelines if he provides "substantial assistance."
"I want to remind people that the action he took was one singular ticket, when he was not a sitting Traffic Court judge," said Michael Malloy, Miller's attorney.
Hogeland's attorney, Craig Sopin, said the decision to plead guilty came easily to the ex-judge.
"Part of it was to put this behind him, and part of it was to save his family the additional stress that would go along with a trial," Sopin said. "I give him a lot of credit."