Attorney Tried to Kill His Client
WOODSTOCK, Ill. (CN) - The attorney a man hired to represent him in a child custody dispute had an affair with the mother of the client's child, then tried to hire hit men to kill him - three times - and was sentenced to prison for it, the client claims in court.
Brian Hegg claims defendant attorney Jason Smiekel also gave him bad legal advice.
Smiekel is serving 8 1/2 years in federal prison for attempted murder for hire, according to the complaint in McHenry County Court.
Hegg sued Smiekel; attorney Terry Mohr; the Mohr, Bruce, Nader, Hirsch & Hill law firm; and its later incarnations, Mohr Hill & Smiekel; and Mohr & Associates.
In the complaint, Hegg claims he retained Mohr, Bruce, Nader, Hirsch & Hill to represent him in a child custody battle in 2008.
The firm was renamed Mohr, Hill & Smiekel later that year, and renamed again as Mohr & Associates in 2011, according to the complaint.
Smiekel was assigned to his case, Hegg says. He claims that Smiekel had a drinking problem. He claims Smiekel carelessly and negligently advised him to pay medical bills and other bills for the mother of his child, nonparty Megan Wangall, though the bills "were never produced or shown to him;" that Smiekel told him that if he did not pay the bills, "sight unseen, the judge would issue penalties against him;" that "it was a waste of time and money to request the court for joint custody of the child with Megan Wangall;" and that Smiekel "created a conflict of interest when he formed a romantic relationship with Megan Wangall, while still attorney of record for Hegg."
But that was just the beginning, Hegg says.
He claims that on Feb. 10, 2011, Smiekel told him "that he had a romantic encounter with Megan Wangall."
Also in February 2011, Smiekel "attempted to have Hegg murdered," while Smiekel was still his attorney of record, "showing an utter indifference and/or conscious disregard for Hegg's safety," the complaint states.
But that's still not all. The complaint states:
"That in March 2011, defendant Smiekel formally withdrew as attorney of record for plaintiff Hegg.
"That after withdrawing as counsel for plaintiff Hegg, defendant Smiekel appeared in court with Megan Wangall, drafted legal documents on her behalf, offered her advice outside of court, and disclosed privileged and/or confidential information in regards to her continuing parentage action against plaintiff Hegg.
"That defendant Smiekel and Megan Wangall continued their relationship and engaged to marry in May 2011.
"That in a second attempt to kill plaintiff Hegg, defendant Smiekel offered to release a judgment lien from defendant Mohr, Hill & Smiekel, P.C. against a former client in return for that client murdering plaintiff Hegg.
"That in a third attempt to kill plaintiff Hegg, defendant Smiekel solicited an undercover agent from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to commit the murder of plaintiff Hegg.
"That in August 2011, agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives arrested defendant Smiekel for solicited the aforementioned undercover agent.
"That in August 2011, defendant Smiekel was indicted on seven counts of using interstate facilities in his alleged murder-for-hire scheme to kill plaintiff Hegg.
"That in December 2012, defendant Smiekel was sentenced to 8 1/2 years in federal prison after pleading guilty in his murder-for-hire scheme against plaintiff Hegg.
"That as a direct and proximate result of the foregoing, plaintiff Hegg suffered loss of the use of the monies paid to Megan Wangall in the parentage action, suffered a loss of the use of monies paid for legal services rendered by defendants, was unable to establish as close of a relationship with his son, and suffered emotional trauma stemming from the murder-for-hire scheme and strain on the relationship with his son."
Hegg claims that defendant Mohr and the defendant law firm(s) "carelessly and negligently allowed defendant Smiekel to provide legal advice to Hegg at a time he knew or should have known Smiekel was drinking heavily, experiencing anxiety bouts and receiving mental health treatment; ...
"Carelessly and negligently allowed defendant Smiekel to provide legal advice to Hegg after Smiekel formed a romantic relationship with Megan Wangall, while still attorney of record for Hegg; ... [and]
"Carelessly and negligently allowed defendant Smiekel to use his position at the aforementioned defendant law firms to plot and/or attempt to execute the murder of Hegg."
Hegg seeks more than $50,000 in damages. He is represented by Alex Abate with Sutter & Ori.