Massachusetts Attorney Suspended Indefinitely for Criminal Forgery and Misconduct
A Massachusetts attorney has been suspended indefinitely as the result of two claims of misconduct, including falsifying information to the FBI and forging real estate documents. Specifically, in April of 2006 and January of 2007, the attorney met with FBI agents and alleged that his bank had “misdirected” approximately $88,000 from his account. The attorney furnished several documents to the FBI, which were found to have been fabricated. The attorney pleaded guilty to criminal charges for this misconduct on October 29, 2007, and was sentenced to two years probation, which he failed to disclose to bar counsel, as required under S.J.C. Rule 4:01, § 12(8) and Mass. R. Prof. Conduct 8.4.
Subsequently, in 2014, the attorney also falsified real estate documents regarding a home he had rented from another attorney. The landlord had informed the attorney of his intention to sell the property and then the attorney provided his landlord with an agreement indicating that the home would be purchased by a trust. The landlord signed the agreement, and then received a purchase and sale agreement allegedly executed by a trustee as a buyer. In reality, the attorney had forged the trustee’s signature and the trustee had no knowledge of this transaction. This conduct violated Mass. R. Prof. Conduct 8.4(c) and (h).
In August 2016, Bar Counsel filed a Petition for Discipline with the Massachusetts Board of Bar Overseers related to the attorney’s misconduct. In April 2017, the Board recommended that the attorney be indefinitely suspended, which the Supreme Judicial Court subsequently ordered.