St. Louis Lawyer Sentenced for Faking Legal Documents for At Least 30 Clients
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Missouri
ST. LOUIS – U.S. District Judge Sarah E. Pitlyk on Monday sentenced a St. Louis, Missouri lawyer to 31 months in prison for faking legal documents and forging judges’ signatures in cases involving at least 30 clients.
Judge Pitlyk also ordered Andrew Gavin Wynne to pay $351,000 in restitution for losses suffered by his former law firm. Wynne created fictitious documents with forged signatures in cases in St. Louis as well as St. Louis and St. Charles counties. Wynne created bogus court orders, judgments and emails authored by at least ten separate judges, some of which falsely claimed to award money to his clients.
In one example, Wynne sent an email to a client on Feb. 28, 2020 that included a fictitious judgment and decree of dissolution with a forged judge’s signature. That divorce decree said Wynne’s client's marriage was dissolved and the parties would have joint legal and physical custody of the minor children. The decree also said the client was owed $900 per month child support, $5,000, a vehicle and other assets.
On July 21, 2020, Wynne emailed another client an order with a forged judge’s signature that claimed $20,200 in payments were owed to that client.
Wynne’s series of deceptions and lies began unraveling when a client complained to Wynne’s boss.
One victim told Judge Pitlyk during Monday’s sentencing hearing that his divorce was still not finalized, and that Wynne’s actions had cost him his relationship with his two daughters.
Wynne’s former boss said Wynne’s actions and deceptions were unprecedented in Missouri, had “stunned” clients and caused him “abject humiliation, utter despair and fear for the future.” The firm is still unwinding and trying to repair Wynne’s misdeeds, which the boss said victimized both clients and the judicial system.
Wynne, 35, pleaded guilty in March to five felony counts of identity theft.
The FBI investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Derek Wiseman and Kyle Bateman are prosecuting the case.
Updated June 12, 2023