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    United States Attorney's Office
    Central District of California

    Thom Mrozek
    Public Affairs Officer

    (213) 894-6947
    thom.mrozek@usdoj.gov



    Return to the 2009 Press Release Index
    Release No. 09-104

    August 18, 2009

    ORANGE COUNTY MAN WHO FALSELY CLAIMED TO BE ATTORNEY SENTENCED TO ADDITIONAL TWO YEARS IN FEDERAL PRISON

    SANTA ANA, California – A Newport Beach man convicted of falsely claiming to be an attorney to courts, real lawyers and paying clients has been sentenced to an additional two years in federal prison for again posing as a lawyer only days after he completed a seven-year prison term.

    Harold Goldstein, 64, was sentenced yesterday afternoon by United States District Judge David O. Carter, who imposed the maximum penalty for the violation of supervised release.

    Goldstein was arrested in June by the United States Probation Department on allegations that he violated the terms of his supervised release. Later that month, Judge Carter determined that the allegations were true and yesterday imposed the additional prison time.

    After being indicted in February 2003, Goldstein was convicted of making false declarations to courts by swearing under oath or penalty of perjury that he was an attorney licensed to practice in the State of California. He was also convicted of mail fraud for sending solicitation letters to inmates advertising his legal services. As part of his scheme, Goldstein stole the identity of a real attorney in Northern California. After extensive litigation, Goldstein was sentenced to seven years in prison.

    Goldstein was released from prison on May 1, and a month later he was re-arrested for allegedly violating the terms of his supervised release by holding himself out as an attorney and working in the legal field without the approval of his probation officer. On June 1, Goldstein, posing as an attorney, posted an ad on Craigslist soliciting attorneys to work for him. When attorneys responded to the job ad, Goldstein represented that he was a retired or semi-retired attorney looking to contract with another attorney to do in-court legal work. Goldstein then requested the attorney’s letterhead and business cards.

    The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

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    Release No. 09-104
    Return to the 2009 Press Release Index