ILNews

Conour alleges feds reneged on deal to delay prosecution

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

Former personal injury attorney William Conour has filed an affidavit in his federal wire fraud case swearing that the government reneged on a deal to delay his prosecution so that he could settle outstanding cases that could have generated about $2 million in fees.

Conour also calls out lawyers who took over those approximately 55 cases. “None of the lawyers who assumed representation of those clients has paid any of the fees owed to me or reimbursed the expenses I advanced,” Conour wrote.

Once one of Indiana’s go-to personal injury attorneys, Conour was charged in April 2012 with a single count of wire fraud. Authorities charged him in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana with defrauding more than 25 clients of at least $4.5 million. Victims and attorneys familiar with the case believe the figure might be several million dollars more

According to the affidavit, Conour and his then-attorney James Voyles met with federal prosecutors, an FBI agent and an Indiana state trooper in the month before his arrest to discuss potential settlement of Conour’s pending cases and to arrange for Voyles to hold the fees from those settlements in a trust from which Conour could draw living expenses and “pay future client annuity costs or client restitution, should any be required.”

“It was agreed that I would have access to these funds for personal and family living expenses and debt obligations upon approval of (the assistant U.S. attorney) or upon court order in the absence of an agreement. The government agreed to defer filing criminal charge until June (2012), to allow the maximum possible accumulation of settlement fees and expenses into this fund,” Conour said in the affidavit.

But Conour said he was in mediation with a client in late April of that year when Voyles called and told him that a criminal complaint would be filed and that Conour would have to surrender on April 27, which he did.

“The publication of the criminal complaint destroyed my law practice and caused my remaining clients to terminate their contract for legal services with me and seek other counsel,” Conour wrote in the affidavit.

(The affidavit erroneously refers to the events taking place in 2011 rather than 2012.) “The filing of the criminal complaint in April (2012), only a couple of weeks after the meeting rather than in June, effectively destroyed the original purpose of the fund by depriving me of the ability to settle any additional cases to increase the fund by more than two settlements” that amounted to about $150,000, Conour wrote.

Voyles said Friday that there had been no written or “handshake” agreement to delay the filing of criminal charges, though he said Conour had hoped such an arrangement could be made.

Conour filed the affidavit as Chief Judge Richard Young considers Conour’s request for $10,000 in living expenses from the  trust now held by the court. The government opposes the release of funds to pay for, among other things, monthly car payments totaling more than $3,500.

Conour was appointed a federal public defender in January after he said his sole monthly income was $2,000 from Social Security. Conour’s trial is scheduled for Sept. 9.

The affidavit is part of Conour’s reply in support of the motion to release funds, in which he writes, “The government refers to the fund in question as a ‘restitution fund.’” Conour contends, “this fund was established to allow the government to monitor the collection and disposition of settlement funds and attorney fees collected between April 3, 2012 … and an unspecified time in June when it was anticipated that, upon agreement with counsel for the government, (Conour) would have limited access to those funds to meet his living expenses.”

The former special assistant U.S. attorney assigned to the case, Richard Cox from the Central District of Illinois, has since retired. The replacement federal prosecutor, Jason Bohm from the Central District of Illinois, could not be reached for comment Friday.

 

ADVERTISEMENT

  • Guilty!
    bill Conman is completely guilty of stealing, lying and being a piece of dirt. He stole from me, and I have all the proof the law needs to send him away! good luck con!
  • Cause and Effect
    It wasn't “[t]he publication of the criminal complaint" that "destroyed [your] law practice," but rather your criminal conduct as an attorney, unless, of course, you are innocent.

    Post a comment to this story

    COMMENTS POLICY
    We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
     
    You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
     
    Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in Indiana Lawyer editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
     
    No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
     
    We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
     

    Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

    Sponsored by
    ADVERTISEMENT
    Subscribe to Indiana Lawyer
    1. No second amendment, pro life, pro traditional marriage, reagan or trump tshirts will be sold either. And you cannot draw Mohammed even in your own notebook. And you must wear a helmet at all times while at the fair. And no lawyer jokes can be told except in the designated protest area. And next year no crucifixes, since they are uber offensive to all but Catholics. Have a nice bland day here in the Lego movie. Remember ... Everything is awesome comrades.

    2. Thank you for this post . I just bought a LG External DVD It came with Cyber pwr 2 go . It would not play on Lenovo Idea pad w/8.1 . Your recommended free VLC worked great .

    3. All these sites putting up all the crap they do making Brent Look like A Monster like he's not a good person . First off th fight actually started not because of Brent but because of one of his friends then when the fight popped off his friend ran like a coward which left Brent to fend for himself .It IS NOT a crime to defend yourself 3 of them and 1 of him . just so happened he was a better fighter. I'm Brent s wife so I know him personally and up close . He's a very caring kind loving man . He's not abusive in any way . He is a loving father and really shouldn't be where he is not for self defense . Now because of one of his stupid friends trying to show off and turning out to be nothing but a coward and leaving Brent to be jumped by 3 men not only is Brent suffering but Me his wife , his kids abd step kidshis mom and brother his family is left to live without him abd suffering in more ways then one . that man was and still is my smile ....he's the one real thing I've ever had in my life .....f@#@ You Lafayette court system . Learn to do your jobs right he maybe should have gotten that year for misdemeanor battery but that s it . not one person can stand to me and tell me if u we're in a fight facing 3 men and u just by yourself u wouldn't fight back that you wouldn't do everything u could to walk away to ur family ur kids That's what Brent is guilty of trying to defend himself against 3 men he wanted to go home tohisfamily worse then they did he just happened to be a better fighter and he got the best of th others . what would you do ? Stand there lay there and be stomped and beaten or would u give it everything u got and fight back ? I'd of done the same only I'm so smallid of probably shot or stabbed or picked up something to use as a weapon . if it was me or them I'd do everything I could to make sure I was going to live that I would make it hone to see my kids and husband . I Love You Brent Anthony Forever & Always .....Soul 1 baby

    4. Good points, although this man did have a dog in the legal fight as that it was his mother on trial ... and he a dependent. As for parking spaces, handicap spots for pregnant women sure makes sense to me ... er, I mean pregnant men or women. (Please, I meant to include pregnant men the first time, not Room 101 again, please not Room 101 again. I love BB)

    5. I have no doubt that the ADA and related laws provide that many disabilities must be addressed. The question, however, is "by whom?" Many people get dealt bad cards by life. Some are deaf. Some are blind. Some are crippled. Why is it the business of the state to "collectivize" these problems and to force those who are NOT so afflicted to pay for those who are? The fact that this litigant was a mere spectator and not a party is chilling. What happens when somebody who speaks only East Bazurkistanish wants a translator so that he can "understand" the proceedings in a case in which he has NO interest? Do I and all other taxpayers have to cough up? It would seem so. ADA should be amended to provide a simple rule: "Your handicap, YOUR problem". This would apply particularly to handicapped parking spaces, where it seems that if the "handicap" is an ingrown toenail, the government comes rushing in to assist the poor downtrodden victim. I would grant wounded vets (IED victims come to mind in particular) a pass on this.. but others? Nope.

    ADVERTISEMENT