Coconut Creek lawyer charged with grand theft

Coconut Creek attorney Nicholas Theodore Steffens turned himself in to a Broward County jail to face charges of grand theft after prosecutors said more than a half-million dollars were misappropriated from foreclosure transactions.

Last month the Supreme Court of Florida suspended Steffens, 36, of Parkland, from practicing law, based on an ongoing investigation by the Florida Bar.

In four mortgage foreclosure cases, funds totaling $654,696.83 were used to pay Steffens’ personal expenses and to pay money owed to a mortgage lender or loan servicing company, an arrest affidavit said.

Two transactions happened in Miami-Dade County and two were in Broward County.

The Florida Bar said it opened its investigation into Steffens on Jan. 29 and on Sept. 16 filed its petition for emergency suspension, which the Supreme Court approved two days later.

With ongoing disciplinary proceedings that could eventually mean disbarment, Steffens filed a document on Sept. 28 with the Supreme Court to voluntarily surrender his law license, his lawyer Kevin Tynan said.

Lawyers Rothstein, Rosenfeldt, Adler all behind bars and disbarred

Lawyers Rothstein, Rosenfeldt, Adler all behind bars and disbarred

Their names used to adorn the shingle outside what many people thought was South Florida’s fastest-rising law firm.

But, since early Monday morning, all three name partners of the Rothstein Rosenfeldt Adler firm are behind bars serving time for federal crimes. The trio have also been disbarred.

Their names used to adorn the shingle outside what many people thought was South Florida’s fastest-rising law firm.

But, since early Monday morning, all three name partners of the Rothstein Rosenfeldt Adler firm are behind bars serving time for federal crimes. The trio have also been disbarred.

… (Paula McMahon)

The court’s response is pending.

Meanwhile, Steffens cannot accept new clients and had to stop representing existing clients 30 days after his suspension, according to the court’s order.

He also had to notify clients, opposing lawyers and the courts of his status with the Bar. And he was ordered to stop disbursing or withdrawing any monies from clients’ trust accounts related to his law practice without the Supreme Court’s approval.

Broward County Circuit Judge Elizabeth Scherer ordered a $200,000 bond for Steffens, who surrendered on Tuesday. To get out of jail before trial, Steffens must show that the bond money is from legal sources.

Broward foreclosure lawyer Stern disbarred

The Florida Supreme Court this week disbarred David J. Stern, the Broward County lawyer who once operated the state’s largest foreclosure practice.

In a complaint filed last year, the Florida Bar alleged that Stern failed to supervise employees accused of improperly processing thousands of foreclosures…

The Florida Supreme Court this week disbarred David J. Stern, the Broward County lawyer who once operated the state’s largest foreclosure practice.

In a complaint filed last year, the Florida Bar alleged that Stern failed to supervise employees accused of improperly processing thousands of foreclosures…

(Paul Owers, Sun Sentinel)

Steffens’ criminal attorney, Larry Davis, did not return a call seeking comment.

Steffens has been active in county politics and has served as an officer with the Coral Springs/Parkland Democratic Club.

In 2012, he was a candidate for the Broward County school board, District 4, but did not win office. At that time, his civic and political activities included the Broward County Children’s Services Board; Parkland Education Advisory Board and Broward County Parks and Recreation Advisory Board.

Ltrischitta@Tribune.com, 954-356-4233 or Twitter @LindaTrischitta

Article source: http://www.sun-sentinel.com/local/broward/parkland/fl-attorney-grand-theft-20151021-story.html

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