Years of money woes, health problems, prison and virtual exile from the legal world came crashing down on Marvin Mitchelson all at once last week in a witness chair in a California State Bar Court in Los Angeles.

Weeping quietly, the snowy-haired man — once the world’s most famous divorce lawyer — shakily recounted how difficult life has been since he was suspended from practicing law in 1993 after being convicted of tax evasion, and why reinstatement is so important to him.

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