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Thursday, September 24, 2015

Sadler Law Firm LLP Successfully Completes Chapter 11

Below is a letter I received today from Randall Sadler, managing partner of the Sadler Law Firm, LLP in Houston:

Dear Mr. Ellison,

On May 14, 2014 you posted a blog that Sadler Law Firm LLP had filed for Chapter 11 protection.  As with many law firms, the boom and the bust of 2014-2015 was not the reason for the financial difficulties of the firm.  The various sections of the firm experienced too much success too soon and decided, as many lawyers do so often, that they did need to be a part of something so big, that they could take what they had learned, the money they made, the clients they had been handed, and go do their own deal and make more money.  In a matter of 8 months, 5 sections (of 10-15 attorneys) representing a substantial portion of firm business left the firm to open their own firms.   I filed for reorganization instead of dissolution as a matter of integrity, for the benefit of our employees, and to do the best we could to satisfy the claims of our creditors.  On July 9, 2014, the plan of reorganization was approved by creditors and the court.  On September 21, 2015, the bankruptcy court signed a Final Order closing the case.  Since you found it news worthy to post a blog about our bankruptcy, I would appreciate you posting a blog about our success in navigating the reorganization process and our successive emergence from bankruptcy, reorganized and revitalized.
Our practice is concentrated in oil and gas law as it relates to the upstream oil and gas industry and the oil and gas A & D market.  We have downsized our firm 10 attorneys to accommodate the changing environment in those industries as a result of the dramatic downturn in energy prices in the last year.

Please feel free to contact me if you would like additional information.

Best Regards,

Randall K. Sadler
Managing Partner
Certified in Oil, Gas and Mineral Law
By the Texas Board of Legal Specialization
Since December, 1986

Thursday, September 10, 2015

More on Ex-Kerrvert Lawyer Perry Cortese Money Laundering Fraud Case

There's a good article in Law360 about Perry Cortese's alleged fraud schemes that cheated victims out of about $8.8 Million, available here: 

The indictment alleges Cortese and a woman conspired with one Muhammed Naji to wire the proceeds of the criminal scams as part of a transnational criminal organization

Cortese and Ellis were also charged in the Aug. 20 indictment with running multiple other fraudulent schemes. According to the government, the defendants hacked into other individuals’ financial accounts and engaged in an apparent “catfishing” scheme whereby they feigned romantic relationships with users of social networking and dating sites and convinced victims to wire funds.

Mr. Cortese faces a maximum prison sentence of 20 years

I checked the federal court's website and it does not appear that he has been released on bond. 

The case in Texas is USA v. Ellis et al., case number 15-mj-00184, in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas. The case in Florida is USA v. Ellis et al., case number 15-cr-00320, in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Gerry Spence - Harmless Blowhard or Dangerous Agitator

Gerry Spence has a new book out to capitalize on the anti-police sentiment in the wake of the shooting death of the "gentle giant" Michael Brown by a Ferguson, MO. police officer. I don't see anything coming out of Spence's propaganda about Darren Goforth, the Harris County deputy who was murdered in cold blood by a black thug who shot him in the back multiple times.
I guess he's trying to make a few bucks by cashing in on the hatred that Obama and his minions have incited.

"Police State:  How America's Cops Get Away With Murder" 

by Gerry Spence  
Famed trial lawyer and founder of the Trial Lawyer's College

Available for purchase now!  

In the wake of America's outrage over police brutality in Ferguson, MO and other cities across America, famed trial lawyer Gerry Spence chronicles a history of police brutality and abuse of power in a number of his key cases over 60 years of practicing law.  

In his 18th book,
Police State", Spence issues a stinging indictment of the American justice system and puts forth a plan to restore liberty and justice for all.

If Hilary Clinton gets elected I'm leaving the country

Friday, September 4, 2015

Federal Indictment of Perry Cortese Unsealed

Perry Don Cortese, a former resident of Kerrville who still has cases in area courts, was indicted in U.S. District Court, Middle Dist. of Florida, Tampa Division, on Aug. 20. The indictment has two counts: wire fraud, and international money laundering conspiracy.
The Government alleges that he conspired with Priscilla Ann Ellis and one Muhammed Naji to defraud lawyers. The scam allegedly worked like this: they created fictitious companies and opened bank accounts. They contacted lawyers under the fake names and asked them to represent them in legal disputes and transactions. Then they told the lawyers that the case had settled, or the "defendants" agreed to settle. Cortese, Ellis and Muhammed allegedly forged cashier's checks, which the lawyers endorsed and deposited into their trust accounts. The lawyers allegedly took their fee, then wire transferred the balance to Cortese et al.

Muhammed has already pled guity, presumably with an agreement to help the Government.

Allegedly, the conspirators attempted to disguise the source and nature of the funds, and wired them overseas.

An alleged sideline was setting up fake identities on dating websites and cheating lonely people with hopes of romance.

The indictment also claims they hacked into email accounts and fraudulently transferred money.

The maximum sentence is a fine up to $500,000 and/or 20 years in prison, and in the federal system there's no parole.

Cortese has applied for court appointed counsel.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Former Kerrville Lawyer Perry Cortese Indicted in Federal Court in Florida

The Killeen Daily Herald reports that Perry Cortese got busted in what sounds like a Nigerian type scam, with a co-defendant named Muhammed:
"Perry Don Cortese, a Bell County attorney practicing in Little River-Academy, and Priscilla Ann Ellis, a Harker Heights resident and businesswoman, were arrested Monday by the U.S. Marshals Service and placed in a federal facility in Waco.

"Cortese and Ellis were indicted Aug. 20 in the U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida, Tampa Division, on charges of wire fraud and international money laundering, according to federal court documents obtained by the Temple Daily Telegram. The indictment states Cortese and Ellis conspired with each other and with Muhammad Naji and other people to commit wire fraud by using wire communications to defraud lawyers and law firms across the U.S., and obtained funds under false and fraudulent pretenses. The duo allegedly used shell companies with fake names and opened bank accounts in the names of those shell companies at federally insured financial institutions."
I have to give the usual disclaimer here that being indicted doesn't mean someone is guilty, and is presumed innocent, etc. 
I would not be a good juror in a case like this. I get at least 20 of these Nigerian type solicitations every day that get through my scam/spam filter Barracuda. I'd probably be inclined to convict just because I resent the time I waste having to delete them.