A recent article in the Sacramento Bee reported on an attorney in the northern California area who was charged with financial elder abuse. At the Walton Law Firm, we take elder financial abuse very seriously. As an Elder Justice Advocate, Randy Walton is committed to protecting older Americans from crimes such the ones that occurred recently in Sacramento. When looking for an elder lawyer to help with your legal issues, you should not need to worry whether you will be treated fairly. Contact our office today to learn more about our dedication to safeguarding elders in the San Diego area and throughout the state.
Scams Target Elderly Californians
According to the Bee article, in late August, authorities arrested Delbert Joe Modlin, 63, on charges of financial elder abuse, grand theft, and securities fraud. His release on bail conditioned that he agree not to practice law or see clients until the criminal proceedings ended. Modlin has been licensed to practice law in California since 1987.
Modlin is accused of scamming a 90-year-old man from North Highlands and his 66-year-old daughter into investing substantial sums of money without any real promise of return. According to court documents, he “advised the elderly man to liquidate all his investments, and he persuaded the daughter to invest $120,000 in a new cat litter box that Modlin allegedly had invented.” He promised to double investments, but the father and daughter never saw their money again.
Hiring a Dedicated and Reputable Advocate
Much like records of nursing home abuse violations, it is important to know the background of potential caregivers or advocates. Modlin failed to tell the elderly father and daughter he scammed that he was coping with a “severe gambling problem,” and that he twice filed for bankruptcy–one in 2004, and a second time in 2012. According to one investigator on the case, this is information “that a reasonable prudent investor would consider significant.”
Perhaps more alarming than his financial history, Modlin is currently awaiting trial for felony charges in Placer County, California. In 2011, authorities levied criminal charges against Modlin for “defrauding a frail, elderly couple from Auburn and selling their home and assets without their approval.”
The state of California wants to make sure elderly persons are not fooled by Modlin’s promise to help. The state claims Modlin took steps to wipe away negative information about him on the Internet by hiring a firm to “clean his presence” and “manipulate search engines to obscure negative details.”
Elder abuse can happen anytime and anywhere, and those we trust to act in our best interest are not always trustworthy. It is important to clearly understand the financial the histories of advisors and physical caregivers when planning to trust them with a elderly loved one’s well-being. If you are concerned about fraud or nursing home abuse, contact a San Diego nursing home abuse lawyer at the Walton Law Firm today.
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