Saturday, April 09, 2016

Yet To Be Hit w/ Criminal Charges, Sticky-Fingered Lawyer Gets 30 Days In Jail For Contempt Of Court For Failing To Comply w/ Court Order Demanding An Accounting For Over $2 Million In Sale Proceeds From Auction Of Real Estate Owned By Estate Of Local Judge

In Brooklyn, New York, the New York Daily News reports:
  • A Queens attorney was thrown into jail for 30 days after admitting he raided the late Judge John (Kung Fu) Phillips’ estate for two years, the Daily News has learned.

    Frank Racano, who worked as an attorney for Rev. Samuel Boykin — Phillips’s nephew — has been locked up since March 1 for not complying with a court order telling him to account for funds from the more than $2 million auction of the Slave Theater building and nearby property in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn.

    Racano, 54 of Howard Beach, was hauled into Brooklyn Supreme Court by city sheriffs []. He wore an orange jumpsuit and needed a cane to walk because of a foot injury.

    I tried to stay afloat and it all just snowballed,” Racano told Brooklyn Supreme Court Judge Laura Lee Jacobson.

    Racano admitted that he “robbed from Peter to pay Paul” by writing checks from Phillips’ estate’s escrow account and putting the money into his personal accounts to pay off debts.

    “This estate was used as everyone’s honey pot ... He took an oath as an officer of the court and he violated them,” said Jacobson.

    The judge sentenced Racano to 30 days in jail — on top of the 23 days he spent locked up waiting to go before the judge — and gave him a $1,000 fine. Sources familiar with the case said it is very rare for an attorney to be jailed for contempt of court.
    The Brooklyn District Attorney's Office is investigating Racano, a spokeswoman confirmed.

    This, unfortunately, was not the first time Phillips or his estate have been targeted.

    In 2008, Phillips' former guardian, Emani Taylor, was ordered to repay $403,000 to his estate. And in 2006, Maria Leyna Albertina pleaded guilty for stealing the deeds of several homes in Brooklyn, including one that belonged to Phillips.

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