Thursday, January 27, 2022

SC Attorney Disbarred After Client Complaints, Arrest For Forgery, Conspiracy And Identity Theft

By Liz Farrell

A Lancaster attorney accused of using personal client information to steal money and counterfeit checks to buy a car has been disbarred by the South Carolina Supreme Court.

In the court’s nine-page decision that outlined the Office of Disciplinary Counsel’s findings, Christi Anne Misocky admitted to a litany of misconduct and agreed to pay unspecified restitution and costs.

According to her Facebook page, Misocky specialized in adoption and property law and practiced in North and South Carolina. She is currently awaiting sentencing after pleading guilty to one count of federal conspiracy.

Misocky’s case is yet another black eye against South Carolina’s lawyers, who in some parts of the state— particularly in the Lowcountry — are experiencing a backlash from clients as a result of the ongoing criminal investigations against powerful Hampton County attorney Alex Murdaugh.

The decision against Misocky, however, shows a thorough investigation and strong response by the ODC, which responds to allegations of attorney misconduct.

The Criminal Charges

In March 2019, Misocky’s license to practice law was placed on interim suspension in South Carolina after she was arrested and charged with two counts of forgery.

A year later, she was indicted by a federal grand jury on charges of conspiracy, forgery, counterfeiting and identity theft. The two forgery charges in 2019 were dismissed after the federal indictment.

Misocky is accused of giving “personal client information” to two acquaintances — Howard Everett Anderson and George Dusean Norman, both of Rock Hill — who “used that information to make and pass counterfeit and forged securities in the names of clients.”

“These two other individuals deposited the money from the forged securities into a designated account from which Respondent paid them a percentage of the fraudulently obtained proceeds,” according to the S.C. Supreme Court decision.

Misocky allegedly endorsed the stolen checks and attempted to use another person’s identity to “facilitate a vehicle trade” on Oct. 15, 2018. That same day she is also accused of using a fake driver’s license and Social Security Card and attempting to use them to buy a car at Vehicles Direct in North Charleston.

At the end of November 2018, Misocky “purchased a new vehicle at Rick Hendrick Jeep Chrysler Dodge Ram in North Charleston” using a fake identity, according to the federal indictment.

“On or about Nov. 30, 2018, Christi Anne Misocky passed two counterfeit checks in the amount of $10,500 each with the intent to defraud Rick Hendrick Jeep Chrysler Dodge Ram in North Charleston.”

On Feb. 15, 2019, Misocky was arrested by an officer with the North Charleston Police Department and charged with two counts of forgery, according to the Charleston County Public Index.

According to the federal indictment, on Feb. 26, 2019, Misocky was discovered with the fake IDs, fraudulent checks and client files from her law office.

She is also accused of endorsing stolen checks in the amounts of $693.92 and $1,841.48, possessing and using someone else’s identification, as well as possessing “at least 15 devices which were counterfeit and unauthorized access devices.”

The Client Complaints

Problems with Misocky began to surface in 2017 when a client accused her of failing to communicate important details about a 2016 child support modification action brought against him.

Misocky “did not communication with Client A … and failed to diligently work on the case,” according to the Supreme Court decision.

Misocky withdrew as counsel in September 2017, and the Office of Disciplinary Counsel sent her a notice of investigation with a request to respond in 15 days. Misocky did not respond, however, and was subpoenaed by the ODC for her client’s file.

In December 2017, Misocky submitted a response to the ODC but “did not address Client A’s allegations, instead claiming Client A’s wife filed the complaint due to a personal grudge Client A’s wife had” with her. In response to the subpoena for her client’s file, Misocky provided an invoice of fees, a copy of the motion to withdraw as counsel and a copy of a proposed order of continuance.

Misocky sent an additional response in March 2018, denying the accusations against her but providing no evidence to support the denial.

Several more complaints followed this.

In December 2016, Misocky was hired to represent Client B in a foreclosure case.

Misocky was “late to the first hearing in the case, and when she did arrive, she was not prepared.” The hearing was rescheduled, but Misocky “failed to appear for the sedan hearing.

“Client B attempted to call Respondent several times with no success. Client B also emailed Respondent in an attempt to reach her, but Respondent did not respond.” (Click to continue reading)

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