Supreme Court disciplines 19 attorneys
The Florida Bar announced the Florida Supreme Court in recent court orders disciplined 19 attorneys, disbarring two, revoking the licenses of seven, suspending eight and publicly reprimanding two. Two attorneys received more than one form of discipline. One was placed on probation and both were ordered to pay restitution.
The only Jacksonville attorney was Michael Winston Lanier, 2711 Dean Road, who was suspended for 45 days, effective 30 days from a July 24 court order. In the context of providing loan modification and foreclosure rescue services, Lanier became associated with several non-legal entities to provide staffing and secretarial services. At one point, Lanier's law firm shared an address and phone number with two of the non-legal businesses. These entities, not bound by the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar, would procure clients throughout the country for Lanier's firm. In several cases, Lanier's non-lawyer employees then performed unsatisfactory work.
Others disciplined include:
• Timothy A. Berry, P.O. Box 973, Winter Park. The Supreme Court granted Berry's request for disciplinary revocation, effective 60 days from a July 24 court order, with leave to seek readmission after five years. Disciplinary revocation is equivalent to disbarment. Berry had several disciplinary complaints pending including lack of diligence and excessive fees.
• Lilia A. Casal-Diaz, 306 Alcazar Ave. Penthouse, Coral Gables. The Supreme Court granted Casal-Diaz's request for disciplinary revocation, effective 30 days from a July 24 court order, with leave to seek readmission after five years. Disciplinary revocation is equivalent to disbarment. In October 2012, Casal-Diaz pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to one count of conspiracy to defraud the government.
• Roland Cherasard, 909 N. Miami Beach Blvd., Suite 501, North Miami Beach. The Supreme Court granted Cherasard's request for disciplinary revocation, effective immediately, with leave to seek readmission after five years, following a July 15 court order. A disciplinary revocation is equivalent to disbarment. Cherasard entered a plea agreement in Circuit Court to a felony charge of grand theft.
• George Granville Lewis, 4341 N.W. 6th St., Plantation, disbarred effective immediately, following a July 24 court order. Lewis was found in contempt for failing to comply with the terms of a May 1, 2012, suspension order. He was ordered to notify all his clients, opposing counsel and tribunals of his disbarment, and provide The Florida Bar within 30 days of the disbarment, a sworn affidavit listing the names and addresses of all persons and entities that were furnished a copy of his disbarment order.
• Timothy Patrick McCabe, 30 S. M St., Lake Worth, permanently disbarred effective immediately, following an Aug. 12 court order. McCabe was the subject of 29 separate Florida Bar disciplinary matters. He misappropriated millions in client funds and he abandoned his law practice.