Monday, September 25, 2023
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Lawyer Accused of Aiding Housing Fraud

MIAMI (CN) - A couple claims an attorney with Fowler White Burnett and their former son-in-law took them for more than $1 million, claiming the money was to bail out the son-in-law and defend him from accusations that he had stolen millions of dollars from Miami-Dade County.

Francisco and Eva Aleman sued Lilly Ann Sanchez and Fowler White Burnett in Miami-Dade County Court.

According to the complaint, the Alemans' then-son-in-law, Oscar Rivero, a public housing developer, was arrested in 2006 on charges of stealing more than $2.8 million from Miami-Dade Housing Agency, Miami-Dade Housing Agency Development Corp. and the city of Miami. Rivero allegedly used the money intended for affordable housing projects to buy a $4.9 million office building and a large home.

For his criminal lawyer, Rivero retained Lilly Ann Sanchez from Fowler White Burnett. Sanchez is related to the Alemans, according to the complaint.

Sanchez asked the in-laws to post Rivero's bail of $120,000 and to provide more than $1 million for Rivero for his defense, according to the couple's complaint. In exchange, the Alemans say, Sanchez offered the deed to Rivero's property, but she failed to include witness signatures on the special warranty deed, voiding the transfer of title.

To conceal this "misconduct," the Alemans claim, Sanchez told them not to record the deed because a sale was being negotiated, which "would generate sale proceeds in excess of the plaintiffs' $1 million."

They say Sanchez then helped Rivero get a $650,000 loan from JR Family Holdings LLC, using the property as collateral.

The couple also claim that Sanchez had an "inappropriate" relationship with Rivero and that he paid her personal bills.

Aleman and his wife seek damages for fraud, conspiracy, breach of fiduciary duty and negligent supervision.

They are represented by Andrew Hall.

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