State Bar Helps Clients of Bogus Immigration Law Practice, 080317 CABJ, CBJ-August 2017 #03

State Bar Helps Clients of Bogus Immigration Law Practice

No. 2017 #03

California Bar Journal

August 3, 2017

The State Bar in July obtained an interim court order to assist an estimated 2,000 clients who had paid for legal advice from a Los Angeles immigration practice operating without proper authority.

The Los Angeles County Superior Court interim order signed Thursday, July 6, allowed the State Bar to seize client files and other records of the unauthorized law practice of Servicio Latino Legal Office, SLLSCO Inc., 1625 W. Olympic Blvd., Suite M-107, Los Angeles.

The State Bar is returning clients' documents to them and informing them it may be in their best interest to seek other legal counsel. The court order also froze the office's bank accounts.

The State Bar sought the court order in cooperation with the Los Angeles County Department of Consumer and Business Affairs, which investigated, and the Los Angeles City Attorney's Office, which brought criminal charges against operator Eddie Rivas Bonilla earlier this year. All three agencies are part of an immigration services fraud working group that aims to protect vulnerable consumers from falling victim to legal scams.

Bonilla had promised a Department of Consumer Affairs investigator posing as a...

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