A former Brooklyn, N.Y., lawyer has pleaded guilty to fleecing millions of dollars from guardianship accounts he oversaw for incapacitated seniors and children.
Steven T. Rondos and his law firm, Raia & Rondos, were indicted in January on money laundering and grand larceny charges for stealing more than $4 million. On Wednesday, Rondos pleaded guilty to all 19 counts of the indictment, said his lawyer, Franklin A. Rothman.
Rondos, who has been free on bail, "acknowledged fully that he committed some wrongful takings," Rothman said, but added that the amount taken was "very much in dispute." He said Rondos had paid back around $1 million before any probes had begun. It was later discovered that at least 16 court examiners who oversaw Rondos had signed off on his reports without detecting any red flags. Five examiners resigned in the wake of the investigation and one was suspended.
Rondos, who has since been disbarred, faces six to 18 years in prison when sentenced on Jan. 22.
The law firm has pleaded not guilty; its case is on the calendar for Dec. 3.
Disbarred Attorney Pleads Guilty to Guardian Account Thefts