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Long Island Lawyer Said to Have Fleeced Clients

BROOKLYN, N.Y. (CN) - A lawyer accused of stealing more than $100,000 in settlement money from his personal injury clients was hit with a 61-count indictment Tuesday.

The indictment takes aim at settlement checks from 15 clients that Kenneth Gellerman, 57, of Bellmore, Long Island, deposited in an escrow account from 2008 to 2013.

Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson said Gellerman drew against that account and stiffed his personal-injury clients who were owed settlements.

Gellerman also settled cases without even informing his clients they were entitled to a pay-out, Thompson said.

He kept it up even after he was suspended from practicing in January 2013, according to the indictment.

Gellerman was arraigned Tuesday on an array of charges including first-degree scheme to defraud, grand larceny, forgery and practicing law while suspended, Thompson said.

The DA said Gellerman was ordered held on bail for either a $100,000 bond or $25,000 in cash.

Gellerman returns to court Nov. 5, and faces up to 15 years.

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