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Indy attorney gets 6 years for estate theft

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An Indianapolis attorney who faced felony charges for stealing more than $270,000 from an estate he managed pleaded guilty and was sentenced to six years, the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office announced Tuesday.

David Rees, 73, pleaded guilty as charged to one count of Class C felony theft and one count of Class D felony obstruction of justice. The prosecutor’s office brought the charges in March. Rees agreed to plead guilty at that time.

Rees drafted the will and was executor for his client Benjamin Roberts. Eight years after Roberts’ death, nearly $400,000 was missing from the estate, according to the probable cause affidavit. Rees acknowledged diverting nearly $271,000 to his personal account.

He will serve four years on home detention, followed by two years of probation. He faced a maximum sentence of eight years.

The obstruction of justice charge stems from a fraudulent final accounting filing in the estate, which indicated the missing money was still in the estate.

“Mr. Rees abused the position of trust he was given by the Roberts family, stealing from the very account he was obligated to protect,” Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry said. “As attorneys, we are bound by our oath to support the rule of law in every respect. We will accordingly vigorously prosecute those attorneys who have not only failed to uphold that standard, but have engaged in criminal conduct.”

Rees also must pay $270,000 in restitution.

Rees, who was admitted to practice in 1965, resigned from the bar in January.

 

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  1. Please I need help with my class action lawsuits, im currently in pro-se and im having hard time findiNG A LAWYER TO ASSIST ME

  2. Access to the court (judiciary branch of government) is the REAL problem, NOT necessarily lack of access to an attorney. Unfortunately, I've lived in a legal and financial hell for the past six years due to a divorce (where I was, supposedly, represented by an attorney) in which I was defrauded of settlement and the other party (and helpers) enriched through the fraud. When I attempted to introduce evidence and testify (pro se) in a foreclosure/eviction, I was silenced (apparently on procedural grounds, as research I've done since indicates). I was thrown out of a residence which was to be sold, by a judge who refused to allow me to speak in (the supposedly "informal") small claims court where the eviction proceeding (by ex-brother-in-law) was held. Six years and I can't even get back on solid or stable ground ... having bank account seized twice, unlawfully ... and now, for the past year, being dragged into court - again, contrary to law and appellate decisions - by former attorney, who is trying to force payment from exempt funds. Friday will mark fifth appearance. Hopefully, I'll be allowed to speak. The situation I find myself in shouldn't even be possible, much less dragging out with no end in sight, for years. I've done nothing wrong, but am watching a lot of wrong being accomplished under court jurisdiction; only because I was married to someone who wanted and was granted a divorce (but was not willing to assume the responsibilities that come with granting the divorce). In fact, the recalcitrant party was enriched by well over $100k, although it was necessarily split with other actors. Pro bono help? It's a nice dream ... but that's all it is, for too many. Meanwhile, injustice marches on.

  3. Both sites mentioned in the article appear to be nonfunctional to date (March 28, 2017). http://indianalegalanswers.org/ returns a message stating the "server is taking too long to respond" and http://www.abafreelegalasnswers.org/ "can't find the server". Although this does not surprise me, it is disheartening to know that access to the judicial branch of government remains out of reach for too many citizens (for procedural rather than meritorious reasons) of Indiana. Any updates regarding this story?

  4. I've been denied I appeal court date took a year my court date was Nov 9,2016 and have not received a answer yet

  5. Warsaw indiana dcs lying on our case. We already proved that in our first and most recent court appearance i need people to contact me who have evidence of dcs malpractice please email or facebook nathaniel hollett thank you

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