Money Laundering Charges Filed Against of Houston Criminal Defense Lawyer Accused of Defrauding Defendants of Over $1M

Abraham Moses Fisch, a Texas criminal defense attorney, has been arrested and charged with money laundering, conspiracy to commit money laundering, obstruction of justice, and conspiracy. According to prosecutors, Fisch and Lloyd Glen Williams, who is Houston used car financier, allegedly ran a scam that fooled criminal defendants into thinking they could get the charges against them dropped if they were willing to pay money. Since 2008, the two men have allegedly bilked $1.48 million from a number of defendants through their Houston financial fraud.

For example, per the Houston Chronicle, in 2006, Fisch told accused convinced that cocaine trafficker Edilberto “Beto” Portillo that he could get him released from prison for $1 million. At the time, Portillo was charged with money laundering and drug trafficking. He agreed to pay this amount to Fisch’s friend, who turned out to be Williams. Although Williams wasn’t a lawyer, he was presented was someone who had high level contacts and could resolve criminal cases, get charges dismissed, or have prison sentences reduced.

Another defendant that the two men bilked was Umawa Oke Imo. The Houston physical therapy agency owner just went to prison for a $45 million Medicare/Medicaid fraud scheme.

Prosecutors say that the two co-conspirators would mislead their clients about the process of working with the government. The two men also allegedly lied to some, telling them that government officials had accepted the funds as bribes. Not only did the scheme cost those charged with crimes money, but it also prevented them from reaching legitimate plea agreements and caused them to wrongly think that the cases against them would be dropped.

Per the indictment against Fisch and Williams, the two men money laundered the money they made from the fraud. Fisch is also charged with failing to submit his tax returns in a timely manner every year that he received money for the financial scam. If convicted, he faces 10 years/each of the obstruction of justice counts, 5 years for conspiracy, 10 years for each money laundering charge, 1 year for each failure to file tax return count ((between 2006 and 2010), and 10 years for conspiracy to commit money laundering. Meantime, Williams just pleaded guilty to filing a false tax return and obstruction of justice. He faces up to three years behind bars for the bogus filing, five years max for conspiracy, and a $250,000 fine.

Also arrested was Fisch’s wife, Monica Bertman, who allegedly assisted with her husband’s financial scam. If convicted, she faces up to 10 years for obstruction of justice, up to five years for conspiracy, and also a $250,000 fine.

Feds say Houston lawyer bilked more than $1 million,, October 28, 2011
Local Defense Attorney and Others Arrested in Connection with Scheme to Obstruct Justice, FBI, October 28, 2011

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