A recently disbarred Broward County attorney is facing 22 felony charges, including first-degree grand theft, second-degree grand theft, third-degree grand theft, uttering a forged instrument, and obtaining property by fraud.
Each degree of grand theft carries a different maximum penalty. Grand theft in the first degree carries a maximum of 30 years in prison, second-degree carries a maximum of 15, and third-degree carries a maximum of 5.
The attorney is accused of using his position as an attorney to misappropriate funds that were intended to be settlements for his clients. Basically, the accusation is that the attorney collected settlements for his clients, and rather than giving them to his clients according to the client agreement, the attorney kept the money for personal use.
If convicted on all counts, this attorney is facing what would amount to life in prison.
Eric Matheny is a criminal defense attorney serving Miami-Dade and Broward.