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Woman Poses as Inmates' Lawyer, Gets Prison Time

By William Vogeler, Esq. on November 06, 2017 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Just what we need -- another non-lawyer giving lawyers a bad name.

Antonia Barrone, 48, impersonated an attorney and swindled more than 400 prison inmates by claiming to specialize in parole cases. She pleaded guilty to fraud and has been ordered to pay nearly $270,00 in restitution and fines.

She faces 16 months to three years in a New York state prison. One thing's for sure, she won't be passing out business cards there.

Criminal Lawyer

It's bad enough that people think "criminal lawyer" is an oxymoron. But what was Barrone thinking?

Why would anyone dare to dupe convicted criminals -- who are up for parole?! Barrone's crime gives "felony stupid" new meaning.

But wait, according to reports, she created a fake persona as "Mario Vredenburg" to scam inmates and their families. So maybe she thought she could get away with it as a man?

Apparently, she created a phony business and a fake Facebook page to double down on her deception. But that didn't work out because people -- not friends or fans -- posted the conviction news on her social media page.

Fake Identity

Faking her identity and gender was not a good idea, especially when it comes to bunk assignments. Seriously, the women's jail in New York is bad.

In any case, you can't impersonate a lawyer. Maybe you can do impressions; impersonations, no.

Not even law students or law school graduates can practice law without a license. If you're going to give lawyers a bad name, at least wait until you pass the bar.

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