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Thomas scheduled to testify at ethics hearing

Former Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas and his former deputy Lisa Aubuchon listen as Presiding Supreme Court Disciplinary Judge William O'Neil explains the details and procedure of the misconduct complaint brought against them by the State Bar of Arizona, which seeks to remove their licenses to practice law. (Photo by Evan Wyloge/Arizona Capitol Times)

A former prosecutor who teamed up with Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio to make failed criminal cases against three county officials is scheduled to testify Wednesday about his role in pressing cases that critics say were trumped up.

Former Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas is expected to defend the cases at an attorney discipline hearing against him.

Lawyers pressing the case against Thomas say officials, judges and attorneys who crossed Thomas and the sheriff in political disputes were often targeted for investigations and, in some cases, criminally charged.

Thomas and Arpaio say they were trying to root out corruption.

If an ethics panel finds that Thomas violated professional rules of conduct, he could face a wide range of punishments, including an informal reprimand, censure, suspension or disbarment.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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