Angry Federal Court Trustee Sues Disbarred Lawyer Mark Stopa For Embezzling $1,169,426.36 From His Former Law Firm
Grab the popcorn. The final countdown to the Mark Stopa saga has started. It is only a matter of time before disbarred lawyer Mark Stopa is formally indicted for fraud.
What little credibility Stopa has left has taken another big hit. The Federal Court trustee overseeing the bankruptcy of his former law firm has filed suit against Stopa for civil fraud.
Federal Court Trustee Stephen Meininger is claiming Stopa defrauded his former law firm out of $1,169,426.36. Stopa also attempted to scam another $750,000 from his former business partner, Richard Mockler.
The complaint (that you can read below) shows what a true sociopath Mark Stopa is.
The Damning Complaint Against Disbarred Lawyer Mark Stopa
The bankruptcy trustee alleges that in June 2018, now disgraced lawyer Mark Stopa knew his legal career was just about over. Disbarment was on the horizon. As a result, Stopa entered into a partnership with attorney Richard Mockler.
Mockler entered into a stock purchase agreement in which Stopa transferred 50 shares of stock in
the Firm to Mockler. Thus, Mockler became a 50% partner in the Firm.
The bankruptcy trustee alleges Stopa took steps to conceal the firm’s financial books and records from Mockler.
For instance, Stopa instructed his staff to give Mockler the “run-around” concerning the status and location of records if Mockler asked about them.
Details Of Disbarred Lawyer Mark Stopa’s Cash Grab From The Law Firm
While Stopa was on notice of his potential suspension from the practice of law he made large disbursements of funds from the operating account to his own bank account. Stopa used the money to pay personal expenses charged to an American Express card, and to third parties for Stopa’s benefit. Stopa transferred over $341,000 from the operating account to himself or to third parties for his benefit after Mockler became a 50% owner of the Firm.
Several weeks later, Stopa transferred $120,000 from the firms’ operating account to Inland Assets, LLC. Inland Assets is owned and controlled by Stopa
A week later, on June 20, 2018, Stopa transferred $39,598.11 from the operating account to pay his American Express card.
Two and a half weeks later, Stopa transferred another $100,000 from the operating account to his personal checking account.
On or about July 19, 2018, Stopa used another $41,673.24 of the firm’s money to pay personal charges on an American Express card.
Six days later, Stopa transferred another $40,000 from the firm’s operating account to his personal checking account.
Bankruptcy Trustee Stephen Meininger alleges that Stopa concealed the transfers from Mockler. He also alleges Stopa instructed the staff with knowledge of the firm’s financial records to conceal them from Mockler.
Stopa Takes His Associates And Former Clients On A Guided Tour Of The Seventh Layer Of Hell
The Florida Supreme Court suspended Stopa’s law license less than two weeks later. Stopa was permanently disbarred in 2019.
As a result of his suspension from the Florida Bar, Stopa agreed to transfer his remaining 50% to Mockler in exchange for a promissory note in the amount of $750,000
After taking control of the firm, Mockler learned that the firm couldn’t make payroll. Nor could it pay any other bills as a result of the transfers. Mockler demanded Stopa return the money. Stopa refused.
Soon after, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement raided the firm’s offices and took the Firm’s computers, files, and other records. The investigation involved suspected criminal activity Stopa had engaged in through the Firm.
Shortly after the FDLE raid, the firm’s employees informed Mockler of the transfers and of Stopa’s questionable activities.
Mockler also learned for the first time of the existence of an anonymous “dossier” detailing Stopa’s alleged equity skimming.
Stopa failed to inform Mockler of the existence of the dossier and failed to inform him that the firm was involved in multiple equity skimming scams.
Mockler also learned Stopa failed to pay its ordinary course obligations as they become due. Namely, court reporter invoices and office rent for the firm.
Stopa also left hundreds of homeowners exposed to ravenous foreclosure mill lawyers eager to take the homes away from hard-working homeowners.Disbarred Lawyer Mark Stopa
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