The Florida Supreme Court has disciplined nine South Florida attorneys, including Russell Adler, a former law firm partner of convicted Ponzi schemer Scott Rothstein. Adler was suspended for 91 days.
Adler, once a partner in the now defunct firm of Rothstein Rosenfeldt Adler of Fort Lauderdale, was disciplined for misrepresenting his finances and equity status within the firm to a cooperative apartment board. Additionally, none of the settlement statements he prepared over four years contained an attorney’s signature or even space for an attorney to sign.
Rothstein is serving a 50-year prison sentence for masterminding a $1 billion Ponzi scheme.
Other South Florida lawyers disciplined:
–Libio Calejo of Doral, who was disbarred for failing to notify all his clients and opposing counsel of his May 15 suspension.
–Joseph Fernandez of Miami was suspended for three years and will be placed on probation for one year for failing to adequately communicate with a client in a civil matter and failing to file proper documents to administer an estate and attend a court hearing.
–Beverly Ann McComas of Plantation was suspended for 90 days for failing to ensure that her employees appeared in court for hearings, properly managed mortgage foreclosure files and filed documents that were properly notarized, witnessed and dated
–Carlos Muniz of Miami was suspended for 10 days for being combative and abusive to a judge who had to halt a hearing and recuse herself.
–Jeffrey Alan Norkin of Fort Lauderdale was suspended for two years and will receive a public reprimand for behaving in an unprofessional and antagonistic manner during the course of litigating a civil case.
–Jacob Addington Rose of West Palm Beach was disbarred and ordered to pay restitution of $1,600 to two clients for failing to provide adequate representation to clients, charging excessive fees, failing to appear at hearings and failing to communicate with clients.
–Michael J. Scaglione of Coral Gables was suspended until further order after pleading guilty to one count of money laundering.
–Eric Simon of Boca Raton was suspended for 90 days. Simon served as the escrow agent for a condominium developer when a dispute arose between the purchaser and the developer when a certificate of occupancy was not issued at the time agreed to by contract. Instead of returning the $49,000 deposit or turning the funds over to the court, Simon remitted the funds to the developer without advising the purchaser, according to the court.
The Supreme Court disciplined 21 attorneys throughout the state.