The North Carolina Bar is accusing a Florida attorney of defrauding, deceiving and embezzling money from two mentally disabled clients declared innocent after serving 31 years in prison. The North Carolina Bar filed a complaint against Orlando lawyer Patrick Megaro. He is accused of taking one-third of a $750,000 award given to Henry McCollum and his half-brother Leon Brown, despite having done virtually no work on their behalf. The bar complaint lists 16 ethical violations. Read more about the case at The Marshall Project.
A Florida lawyer is being investigated by the North Carolina State Bar for his treatment of two mentally disabled clients who received $750,000 each after being exonerated in 2015 on rape and murder charges. The Marshall Project reports that Patrick Megaro kept one-third of the awards to Henry McCollum and his half-brother Leon Brown, despite having done “virtually no work” on their cases. Megaro also approved high-interest loans for McCollum and Brown, as well as a $20,000 payment to two women who brought the case to Megaro. Seven months after McCollum received his payment, he was broke. McCollum’s court-appointed guardian has removed Megaro from the case, but he’s still representing Brown. The president of the North Carolina Advocates for Justice has also asked the bar to investigate Megaro.