Monday, December 1, 2008
An Arizona hearing officer has recommended the reinstatement of an attorney suspended by consent for two years and six months in the wake of a federal conviction for wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud. The attorney had been released from prison in June 2004. After his release, he worked as a paralegal and development consultant. The criminal scheme also had involved "the son of a highly respected Baptist minister in Branson, Missouri" and "an attorney with a major law firm in New York" as well as a purported representative of a major Wall Street investment firm, who turned out to be an FBI agent.
The hearing officer found that the attorney was candid, remorseful, had a clear understanding through psychiatric treatment as to why he had done it and that "[h]e stated that under no circumstances would he ever engage in such conduct again..." The hearing officer further discounted the criminal conduct as "a 'paper crime' which, admittedly through no act of the Applicant, never came to fruition and thus injured no one." (Mike Frisch)