Newscast Media MIAMI—In an elaborate scheme that was hatched to defraud clients
who had trusted him, the once-famous Florida attorney, Anthony Livoti Jr. was
sentenced to 10 years in a federal prison for his misconduct, and was ordered to pay
restitution of $826 million to his victims.
In his khaki jail scrubs, the shackled Livoti made a plea to the court for leniency.
“I had a life that was always filled with joy, now I have a life filled with sadness,” the
attorney told the court. “Judge, I am a life worth saving,” he implored the judge.
Investors were also among his victims, in a scheme that defrauded senior citizens and
patients suffering from terminal illnesses. Investors were told they would reap a
profit once the patients and seniors died, and their policies sold.
Once the attorney received the money, his clients were never disbursed the funds
they were promised.
“I lost my way and I wish I could go back and change it,” Livoti said, apologizing to
the victims for what he called the “terrible wrong” he committed.
Cases where greedy attorneys defraud or over-bill their clients thousands of dollars
are not unusual, and the FBI is among one of the several federal agencies that
aggressively pursues attorneys engaged in client fraud. (pop-up)
“When a lawyer, an officer of the court, defrauds clients, it’s a serious crime—and a
heinous breach of trust,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge Edward J. Hanko. “The FBI
is committed to investigating financial schemes at every level and working with our
partners to hold white-collar crooks accountable,” he added, referring to another
FBI-investigated case where lawyers defrauded eight of their clients. (pop-up)
During Livoti’s sentencing, federal prosecutors said Livoti abused his position as an
attorney and violated the public trust.