Monday, October 17, 2016

81-Year Old Ex-Lawyer Buys His Way Out Of Prison Time; Pays $11K Upfront, $400/Month Over 14 Years As Restitution For Ripping Off 80+ Year Old Widow Out Of $75K

In Genesee County, New York, The Batavian reports:
  • Prominent 81-year-old attorney Randolph Zickl was sentenced to five years probation in Genesee County Court [] and ordered to pay $400 a month in restitution to his victim, the widow of a former client.

    Zickl admitted stealing $75,398 dollars from the woman, who is "well into her 80s," and on June 24th he pled guilty to second-degree grand larceny, a Class-C felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison.(1)

    Prosecuting attorney Candice Vogel, an assistant DA in Erie County, said after today's proceedings: “The sentencing order was for five years probation. During that five years of probation the defendant was ordered to make restitution payments at the rate of $400 a month through the Probation Department here in Genesee County. He had already made a payment of $11,300 before we arrived here today.”

    That leaves a remainder of $64,098 in restitution to be repaid to the victim. At the rate set today, she will not see the full restitution payment for approximately 14 years.

    Zickl was once one the most respected attorneys in the county, heading up the County’s Office of Legal Assistance. He also has two sons currently working in the Genesee County District Attorney’s Office.

    One of Randolph Zickl’s defense attorneys said before sentencing that he “feels horrible” about his crime; Zickl declined to speak before sentencing.

    His defense also requested that he be given 60 days before continuing restitution payments as he has already paid a large sum of the amount and is currently living off of Social Security.

    Presiding Judge James Bargnesi gave Zickl 30 days before the resumption of monthly restitution.

    Vogel said that the perpetrator's age, the victim's age, the sizable amount of restitution paid to date and Zickl's assets and capability of paying the remaining amount all factored into the judge's decision to grant probation and set the amount of monthly restitution. Vogel said the victim's family is aware of the terms and indicate they are comfortable with them.

    Asked about the likelihood that the victim will live to reap the benefits of full restitution, Vogel said: "This is one of the biggest issues of financial exploitation of the elderly. It's kind of a race..." to try and prosecute such crimes and recoup what was stolen before the victim dies.

    Vogel said, technically, if Randolph Zickl dies before he completes restitution, the balance will be the liability of his estate and its heirs.
Source: Randolph Zickl given five years probation, ordered to pay $400 a month in restitution.
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(1) The Lawyers’ Fund For Client Protection Of the State of New York manages and distributes money collected from annual dues paid by members of the state bar to members of the public who have sustained a financial loss caused by the dishonest conduct of a member of the New York bar acting as an attorney or a fiduciary.

For similar "attorney ripoff reimbursement funds" that attempt to clean up the financial mess created by the dishonest conduct of lawyers licensed in other states and Canada, see:
Maps available courtesy of The National Client Protection Organization, Inc.

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