Thursday, May 10, 2012

Disbarred Attorney Gets 18 Months For $1M+ Real Estate Escrow Ripoff; Funds Intended To Pay Off Clients' Mortgage, Property Taxes, Insurance

In Providence, Rhode Island, WPRI-TV Channel 12 reports:

  • A disbarred former Cranston lawyer has been sentenced to 18 months in prison for stealing about $1.1 million from his clients. The Providence Journal reports that Robert Natal of East Greenwich cried and took responsibility for his crimes during Tuesday's sentencing in Providence Superior Court. He pleaded guilty in February to 10 counts of unlawful appropriation.(1)

  • Authorities say the married father of five took money his clients gave him to pay off mortgages, taxes and insurance premiums and spent it on travel, groceries and restaurant meals.One of his victims was retired Army officer Albert Rose, who hired Natal to handle a real estate closing in 2009. Rose's son, Staff Sgt. Scott Rose, had recently been killed in Iraq. Natal is set to begin his prison term June 11.
Source: Disbarred lawyer sentenced to 18 months (Convicted of stealing about $1.1M from clients).
(1) The Rhode Island Bar Association's Client Reimbursement Fund was established to provide a public service and to promote confidence in the administration of justice and the integrity of the legal profession by providing some measure of reimbursement to victims who have lost money or property because of theft or misappropriation by a Rhode Island attorney, and occurring in Rhode Island during the course of a client-attorney relationship.
For similar "attorney ripoff reimbursement funds" that sometimes help cover the financial mess created by the dishonest conduct of lawyers licensed in other states and Canada, see:

Maps available courtesy of The National Client Protection Organization, Inc.

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