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Florida: Judge rules guardian can’t bond out of jail with suspected clients’ money

July 31, 2017

Editor’s Note:  Long-time Florida guardian Fernando Gutierrez was arrested in late June 2017, on suspicions of using his clients’ money to fund his personal expenses (where have we recently heard these same accusations? New Mexico, perhaps. Or was it Nevada?) It was a very different Gutierrez who appeared before a judge in Florida, than the cocky, arrogant guardian who debated AAAPG Founder, Dr Sam Sugar, on Oct 19, 2015. CLEARWATER, Fla. – Professional guardian Fernando [- more...]

Embattled Florida Lawfirm faces another reversal in Federal Court

July 31, 2017

The news is not good for a prominent Florida law firm accused of bilking a Ward out of huge sums in a guardianship.  See our prior post at O Connell Verdict These landmark rulings may be the beginning of justice for victims around the state.   DISTRICT COURT OF APPEAL OF THE STATE OF FLORIDA FOURTH DISTRICT LINDA W. BOTTA, individually, BETHANY B. BOYD, individually, and NANCY D. COLACHICCO, individually, Appellants, v. CIKLIN, LUBITZ & O’CONNELL, a Partnership of Professional [- more...]

New Mexico: Court scrambles to replace Ayudando guardians

July 31, 2017

By Colleen Heild / Journal Investigative Reporter State district judges in Albuquerque have identified 176 people, many of them indigent and all of them incapacitated in some way, who relied on Ayudando Guardians for help with everything from living arrangements to ensuring their funds, however meager, were safe. Chief District Judge Nan Nash and Chief Civil Division Judge Shannon Bacon in Bernalillo County said in an interview Friday that the courts are faced with having to quickly find [- more...]

Florida: Jury awards $16.4 Million against guardianship attorneys

July 31, 2017

On Friday, July 28, 2017, a unanimous jury in the U. S. District Court, West Palm Beach Courthouse, awarded $16,400,000 to the Estate of Oliver Wilson Bivins, Sr., and against West Palm Beach guardianship attorneys, Brian O’Connell and Brian O’Connell of the Ciklin Lubitz & O’Connell law firm. The hotly contested two-week jury trial was handled by BBLF partners Ron Denman, Chuck Bavol and Grant Kindrick. The jury found that attorneys Brian O’Connell and Ashley Crispin had breached [- more...]

New Mexico: Who guards the guardians? Ayudando was a family affair

July 31, 2017

By Colleen Heild / Journal Investigative Reporter Ayudando Guardians Inc. opened its doors with two nurses and a medical records expert in 2004. It was formed, according to its website, “due to the enormous need for guardians and conservators in the State of New Mexico.” The nonprofit Albuquerque-based guardian and conservator firm – now accused along with its principal owners of looting millions of dollars from client accounts – grew over the years. And, the company increasingly [- more...]

DOJ looking into guardianship abuse

July 27, 2017

AAAPG is assisting the United states Department of Justice to identify cases of Guardianship abuse for the DOJ to look into for further evaluation. IF your case meets one of these two criteria: Living Victims (only) who are or have been INVOLUNTARILY placed, or kept, in a professional, public or private, guardianship, especially when advance directives have been ignored or when state law designates a family member or friend to serve, and/or Victims, living or deceased, have been removed from [- more...]

Why WINGS doesn’t fly

July 21, 2017

How can the very people who are the problem solve the problem? The National Guardianship Network is a collaborative group of national organizations dedicated to effective adult guardianship law and practice. First convened in 2002, the National Guardianship Network has played a leadership role in advancing guardianship standards, best practices, and education. It awards seed monies (of as much as $20,000 per state unit) and technical assistance to states to create innovative, consensus-driven [- more...]

New Mexico: Employee blows whistle on guardian embezzlement case

July 21, 2017

For more than a decade, one of the state’s largest guardianship firms was routinely appointed by the courts to protect clients whose disabilities left them unable to handle their money or pay their bills. Behind the scenes, federal officials say, Susan Harris and Sharon Moore were allegedly running up the company credit card of Ayudando Guardians to the tune of $4 million by living the life of luxury and paying the American Express bills with client trust money. Then last June, according [- more...]

New Mexico: Guardianship firm seized by marshals

July 20, 2017

By Colleen Heild / Journal Investigative Reporter Wednesday, July 19th, 2017 at 11:45pm A Final Four basketball junket. Caribbean cruises and other luxury vacations. Purchases at an Albuquerque RV Center and a Mercedes-Benz dealership. The alleged lavish spending by the co-founders of one of the state’s largest nonprofit guardianship firms was financed out of the accounts of their special needs clients, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. And on Wednesday, a multiagency federal task [- more...]

NEWS FLASH!! NM Guardians indicted!! Massive Fraud!!

July 19, 2017

This level of corruption is shocking, not just that Ayudando guardians stole millions from vulnerable New Mexicans, but that the NM Judges never even cared to keep tabs on them (as they are required to do). Is it possible they had some incentive to keep appointing them as guardians? Let’s hope this first major indictment is not the last and that the investigation goes to the heart of this American rape of justice–the [- more...]
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