Ann Maher Jun. 10, 2013, 11:00am

This story has been updated.

U.S. District Judge William D. Stiehl signed an order approving Belleville attorney Michael J. Nester's motion to withdraw from representing Michael Cook, the former St. Clair County circuit judge at the center of a courthouse drug scandal.

Nester wrote in a motion to withdraw that the Court mistakenly identified him as having entered appearance on behalf of Cook.

That is "inaccurate and in error," Nester wrote in the motion.

Stiehl approved the motion on June 7.

"That although Michael J. Nester attended the Arraignment of defendant, Michael N. Cook, on Friday, May 24, 2013 he did not enter his appearance in behalf of Mr. Cook.

"That Michael J. Nester moves the Court to correct the aforementioned error and delete all reference to Michael J. Nester having entered his appearance in this case."

Cook was charged May 24 with possession of heroin and being an unlawful user of a controlled substance in possession of firearms. He has entered a not guilty plea to both charges and has since resigned from the judiciary. He was released on a recognizance bond and is undergoing drug treatment.

Cook was arrested May 22 at the Belleville residence of Sean McGilvery, who is accused in federal court of trafficking heroin. He has pleaded not guilty and is in federal custody.

Charges have also been brought against former St. Clair County probation officer James Fogarty.

Federal prosecutors have accused Fogarty of providing cocaine to Cook and to the late St. Clair County judge Joseph Christ the day before the two judges went to Cook’s Pike County cabin. Christ died there on March 10, and although it was originally reported that he died of natural causes, the coroner has since confirmed he died of a cocaine overdose.

Fogarty was released from federal custody after posting a $10,000 recognizance bond and has pleaded not guilty.

Cook continues to be represented by J. William Lucco of Edwardsville, according to the federal court record in Cook's case, although the docket sheet does not show an order of appearance.

Thomas Q. Keefe, Jr. and Thomas Keefe, III of Belleville have also indicated their representation of Cook, however, their names do not appear as attorneys of record Cook's case.

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