Misappropriating clients’ money has resulted in law license revocations for two area lawyers while four others were disciplined by the Florida Supreme Court for other misconduct.
The court granted Tampa lawyer David Anthony Fontes’ petition for disciplinary revocation of his license, which is tantamount to disbarment, according to a Florida Bar written statement. He may apply for readmission after five years.
Fontes was suspended last year and then arrested by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for grand theft. He was accused of misappropriating more than $138,000 entrusted to him to pay the debts of a client’s estate.
Fontes subsequently reimbursed the client’s money.
The court also granted Scott V. Boruta’s petition for disciplinary revocation of his license. The Palm Harbor lawyer had two pending complaints of embezzling client funds and criminal theft.
Hillsborough County deputies investigated Boruta last year and arrested him for grand theft, records show.
A conflict of interest led to a four-month suspension for Sarasota lawyer Kenneth D. Doerr. In an estate case, he represented two clients in a matter in which they had adverse interests and wishes. He displayed “a lack of diligence and candor” by not disclosing to each client that he represented the other, according to the Bar statement.
Land O’Lakes lawyer Henry T. Sorenson II was suspended for three years. He failed to properly represent clients who wanted a trial court’s ruling appealed and failed to file the appeal notice. He also fabricated an appellate court opinion indicating the clients won the appeal.
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Embezzling client money leads to discipline for Tampa Bay lawyers