Jessica Miller, a Florida attorney, was disbarred for stealing $70,000 from her clients. The judge tried to give her some helpful advice for her sentencing: “It really goes a long way in these types of cases to have some money at sentencing.” She didn’t take the advice; instead she had a garage sale and came up with a measly $250.
The judge wasn’t impressed with her fund raising skills and gave her 4 ½ years in jail plus 10 years of probation.
Miller and her paralegal took the money from clients’ trust funds and billed them for work that they didn’t do. They used the money for shopping sprees and meals. The clients were paid back from a special fund from the Florida Bar, but now Miller and the paralegal have to pay back the fund.
Miller apologized for harming the reputation of the legal profession:
“I am deeply apologetic to the court, to the profession as well as my former colleagues for this entire issue, situation, whatever you want to call it,” Miller said. “I’m very, very sorry for the publicity this has brought on the profession.”I had a responsibility to protect my clients … and I failed to do so.”
I think she should be more concerned with her own reputation than that of the legal profession. Not for stealing and billing extra,(clients seem to expect that) but for only coming up with $250 and bringing it to court. Pathetic. Better to have not brought anything. Too bad the criminal below is in England, they could have hooked up in prison and done stupid things together.