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Former California attorney pleads guilty to wire fraud

On June 7, it was reported that a former California attorney pleaded guilty to wire fraud after he falsely represented to his clients that the legal resolutions he obtained for them were favorable. The 36-year-old attorney faxes a maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison for the wire fraud charge.

The former attorney was reportedly a licensed lawyer from January 2012 until December 2017, when he was disbarred. In May 2012, the former attorney and a co-conspirator defrauded the clients by stating that he had gotten favorable resolutions for his clients’ legal cases. However, he rarely obtained favorable resolutions and, in some instances, never even initiated legal action. In many cases, the false representation caused some of the victims to lose their ability to obtain compensation. It is estimated that the false representations cost his clients more than $4 million in actual losses.

One client, for example, suffered injuries in a fall while she was at an Orange County mall. However, the statute of limitations expired before she realized that the former attorney defrauded her. Further, he had also reportedly falsely represented clients who were seeking immigration relief. He had claimed that he obtained important documents that allowed the clients to remain in the US and work.

When individuals are facing serious charges for crimes involving embezzlement or fraud, they are entitled to legal representation. In the event that the attorney falsely represents them in a criminal case, the individuals could potentially end up in prison or with other serious consequences, such as a criminal record. If an individual has evidence that he or she was falsely represented by a previous attorney, another lawyer may be able to request a mistrial. In these cases, the new attorney may go back over all the evidence and even represent the person in court.

Source: Pasadena News Now, “Former Pasadena Lawyer Pleads Guilty to $4 Million Wire Fraud,” June 7, 2019

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John Patrick Ryan has been practicing law for over 20 years. Experienced in criminal law. U.S. Navy Veteran.