Friday, June 12, 2009
O.C. Man Arrested Again for Impersonating Attorney
By a MetNews Staff Writer
A Newport Beach man previously convicted for holding himself out as an attorney to courts, lawyers and paying clients has been arrested—approximately one month after his release from federal prison—for again holding himself out to be a lawyer.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California said Wednesday that Harold Goldstein, 64, was taken into custody Sunday after the U.S. Probation Department alleged that he violated the terms of his supervised release.
Goldstein appeared in court on Monday and was ordered held without bond.
He was previously convicted of making false declarations to courts by swearing under oath or penalty of perjury that he was an attorney licensed to practice in the State of California.
Goldstein was also previously convicted of mail fraud for sending solicitation letters to inmates advertising his legal services. As part of his scheme, Goldstein stole the identity of a real attorney in Northern California.
He was sentenced to seven years in prison after extensive litigation.
Goldstein was released from prison on May 1, but rearrested a month later for allegedly violating the terms of his supervised release by holding himself out as an attorney and working in the legal field without the approval of his probation officer.
On June 1, he allegedly posted an ad on Craigslist.com soliciting attorneys and represented to attorneys who responded to the ad that he was a retired or semi-retired attorney looking to contract with another attorney to do in-court legal work. Goldstein then requested the attorney’s letterhead and business cards.
Goldstein’s preliminary hearing on the matter is set for June 22. If U.S. District Judge David O. Carter determines that Goldstein violated the terms of his supervised release, he could be sentenced to an additional two years in federal prison.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Copyright 2009, Metropolitan News Company