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8 Craziest Lawyer Stories from 2017
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Richard Luthmann. Photo courtesy of the New York Post.

Summary: Attorneys sometimes act as crazy as their clients. This is a list of some of the wildest stories of 2017.

Attorneys are human, and sometimes humans do crazy things. Even illegal things. From faking one’s death to being ordered to live in a padded room, the year 2017 has seen its fair share of attorneys acting badly. The following list is some of the most outrageous stories of the year.

  
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1. Well-known attorney David Boies found himself caught in an ethics scandal when it was revealed he represented Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein the same time his firm represented The New York Times, which was working on a takedown of the Weinstein Company founder. Boies denied the conflict of interest, saying that his firm did not have to disclose details to the Times that did not apply to the cases it had hired his firm for, but the damage was done. The New York Times fired his firm, and his public image was damaged.

2. Richard Luthmann made a name for himself when he asked a competing attorney to settle their case with trial by combat, Game of Thrones-style. But in 2017, the New York attorney proved himself to be a bigger thug when he was arrested for kidnapping, fraud, and extortion. He was accused of running fake companies that defrauded buyers by selling cheap metal marketed as valuable scrap metal. He allegedly hired a gangster to strongarm people, and he even had fraudulently listed a blind client as the head of one of his companies.

3. In Kentucky, Eric Conn was known as “Mr. Social Security” because he specialized in social security cases for his elderly clients. But it turns out, Conn was conning the government, using fake medical reports to get disability claims approved, and instead of facing the consequences, he went on the run for months. In December, he was finally caught in Central America, and he is awaiting trial.

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4. In September, attorney Anthony Pastor was disbarred after he was found guilty of murdering his girlfriend’s dog. The attorney was accused of killing his girlfriend’s 4-year-old dog Snoopy by repeatedly hitting the small pooch. The dog died in August of 2016 and had head injuries and broken ribs.

5. A Florida law firm got caught this year gaining unauthorized access to the opposing side’s computer, according to Law.com. Insurance defense attorney Michael P. Rudd and his firm Rudd &amp Diamond accessed their opponent’s propriety business records in order to defeat them in a civil litigation case. To do this, Rudd and his firm hired John Collucci, a former employee of their opponent, to log into the company’s system using his password. With this, they were able to access the firm’s GPS and information on clients.



6. San Antonio lawyer, Mark Benavides, was arrested last November on multiple counts of forcing his clients to have sex with him, and he was indicted in March of this year. He allegedly told his clients that he would win their cases and lessen their legal problems if they slept with him. One accuser said that she was even introduced to the lawyer by her pimp, and that he once paid $100-200 for sex.

7. In July, attorney Jay Adriaan Venter was listed as dead, and his fiancée confirmed that he was cremated. She even submitted a life insurance claim on his behalf in August. But months later, it was revealed that Venter was very much alive. The attorney had faked his death in order to escape prosecution for allegations of misappropriating funds, and he and his fiancee were caught in December trying to leave the country.

8. Manhattan attorney Andrea Coleman allegedly terrorized her neighbors for years with her loud music and crazy rants about how she hated Barack Obama. After defying a court order to keep it down, a judge ruled this year that she would need to install padding in her condo or the building management would do it for her.

What do you think was the craziest lawyer story of the year? Let us know in the comments below.



 

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