Lawsuit Says Dayton Attorney Assisted In Internet Scam That Cost 84-Year-Old Man Up To $500,000

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

A lawsuit claims that veteran Dayton, Tn., attorney Arnold Fitzgerald assisted in an Internet scam that cost an 84-year-old man between $400,000 and $500,000.

The suit, filed by Chattanooga attorney Hoyt Samples, says attorney Fitzgerald used undue influence over client George Lambert by inducing him to invest large sums in a scheme that promised a $150 million payoff after certain upfront money was paid.

The complaint was filed in Chancery Court in Rhea County. However, judges there have recused themselves and the case will be handled in Hamilton County.

The suit says attorney Fitzgerald convinced Mr. Lambert to continue to pay large sums "though he knew that the purported investments at issue were scams."

It says attorney Fitzgerald has been an attorney in Rhea County for over 40 years. Mr. Lambert lived for an extended time in Rhea County, but is now residing in Bradley County.

The suit says Mr. Lambert came to trust attorney Fitzgerald and rely on his advice.

It says he agreed to start making payments to a fund called "The Mint" that attorney Fitzgerald said originated in Africa, but had been moved to London. A person who went by the name Donald Brindley was the alleged facilitator in the scheme. The suit lists several documents with his name and the name of attorney Fitzgerald on them.

The complaint says the documents have a number of misspellings and are obvious frauds. Mr. Lambert was told to send money to obtain a "Diplomatic Money Laundering Certificate" and more money for an "Anti-Terrorism Certificate." Attorney Samples said there are no such certificates.

The suit says attorney Fitzgerald advised Mr. Lambert "this is a great investment and he would receive a substantial return on his investment."

The complaint asks that attorney Fitzgerald repay Mr. Lambert all he has "invested" plus interest.

It also seeks $1 million in punitive damages. 

Click here to read the lawsuit.

Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: BECTON, JAMES E  18 SEMINOLE DR DALLAS, 30157  Age at Arrest: 51 years old Arresting Agency: Hamilton County IN TRANSIT (MAURY COUNTY, TN) --- BOYD, LYDELL LEVON  2110 CHAMBERLAIN AVE CHATTANOOGA, 37404  Age at Arrest: 38 years old Arresting Agency: Hamilton County VIOLATION OF ... (click for more)

Avery Charged In Attack With Chair Leg At Moccasin Bend That Left Man In Critical Condition

An arrest has been made in the aggravated assault Thursday at the Moccasin Bend Mental Health facility that left 38-year-old Kevin Green in critical condition. He was struck in the head with a chair leg, police said. Leviticus Avery, 37, has been charged with attempted first-degree murder and aggravated assault. He is an inmate at the Hamilton County Jail. ... (click for more)

The Facts About Jail

Since Roy had such a positive reaction to Jeffrey Cross's wonderful (and wonderfully civil--how refreshing) email response to his column on the bike lanes, allow me to speak on the subject of the jail.  First off, Roy's right about some things:  It is overcrowded, underfunded, and understaffed.  This is no secret, it's in the Grand Jury report every term.  Here's ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Black Voice In Memphis

Tennessee got quite a peek at its political barometer Thursday night in Memphis when A.C. Wharton, a once-popular black leader who has been Mayor since 2009, was thoroughly trounced by Jim Strickland, currently on the City Council. Strickland, a white Democrat, may be the first step in bringing the now much-maligned West Tennessee city back to hope and reality. What no one can believe ... (click for more)

Boyd-Buchanan Sloshes Past Meigs, 28-7, For 7th Win

Boyd-Buchanan’s Cooper Hodge ran for two touchdowns and threw for another on Friday, leading the top-ranked and undefeated Boyd-Buchanan Buccaneers to a 28-7 Region 3-2A football victory over visiting Meigs County at a rain-soaked David L. Boyd Field. The game was delayed in the second quarter by lightning and heavy rain at 8:18 p.m. and resumed more than an hour later. The ... (click for more)

Turner Rambles For 194 Yards, 3 TDS In Owls 48-7 Victory

Ooltewah’s Cameron Turner rushed for 194 yards and three touchdowns, a tenacious defense held White County to minus-8 yards of total offense and the Owls stormed to a 48-7 Region 4-5A football blowout win Friday night at James N. Monroe Stadium. Turner scored on runs of 16 and 6 yards in the second quarter and added a 3-yard touchdown burst in the third quarter as the Owls improved ... (click for more)