Criminal Justice

Immigration 'lawyer' conned clients and courts for years, 35-count indictment alleges


Although Michael Schorr is not a lawyer, he practiced in immigration courts in New York and New Jersey for four years by simply borrowing other attorneys’ bar registration numbers or using a fake number, authorities allege.

Arrested Friday and held without bail, he is accused of stealing tens of thousands of dollars from vulnerable immigrants, providing poor representation to many whose cases will have to be reopened and filing fraudulent court documents, according to the Journal News.

Articles published by Newsday (sub. req.) and Reuters, as well as a press release from the New York attorney general’s office, provide further details.

A 35-count Manhattan Supreme Court indictment includes charges of scheming to defraud, grand larceny, falsifying business records, misdemeanor forgery and practicing or appearing as an attorney-at-law without being admitted and registered. His victims included purported clients in federal immigration court in Manhattan, as well as New York’s Putnam, Rockland and Westchester counties and New Jersey, authorities say.

A woman who answered the door at Schorr’s home declined to comment, the Journal News reports. Reuters says Schorr’s lawyer could not be reached for comment.

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