Attorney impersonator facing prison term - East Valley Tribune: News

Attorney impersonator facing prison term

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Posted: Friday, October 10, 2008 3:25 pm | Updated: 10:56 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

PHOENIX - A Phoenix man who impersonated a divorce lawyer has been convicted of 23 counts of theft and one count of fraud.

Gary Karpin, 57, was taken into custody pending a sentencing hearing after Thursday's verdict in Maricopa County Superior Court.

He had been out on bond but was taken into custody after the guilty verdicts were read because the charges require mandatory prison sentences.

Karpin specialized in divorce cases, technically as a mediator and legal-document preparer, but he presented himself as an attorney.

He had been a prosecutor and defense attorney in Vermont, he was disbarred in that state in 1993 and was later disbarred in Maine as well.

Karpin was not a member of the State Bar of Arizona, though he set up his office in Phoenix, which he called Divorce with Dignity, in 1996.

According to the Maricopa County Attorney's Office, Karpin billed the case's 25 victims nearly $300,000 between April 2000 and December 2004.

He was indicted in 2005.

Karpin will be sentenced Nov. 21 and faces prison sentences ranging from six months to 9 1/4 years.

Whether they run consecutively or concurrently is up to the judge. He will also be required to pay restitution to his victims.

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