Attorney Joe Romley Still Practices Despite Scandalous Involvement in Shady Cases & Successfully Sued For Fraud

View More Categories

Latest Message: 3 days, 1 hour ago
  • fast : Hello!
  • guest_2103 : Talking below about Dalley
  • guest_2103 : Lives a very lavish lifestyle. Huge home, fancy cars, private schools. Real men make an honest living. This will be his legacy, sad.
  • guest_7113 : Who do you contact if you have been a possible victim?
  • guest_4020 : Don’t talk about him tht way. He is Ana amazing person and did not do this. You really believe a LAWYER did this. How dumb must you be to believe this shit. Screw you and you’re entire family for writing this about him. HE HAS A FAMILY WHO IS IN PAIN BECAUSE OF YOU PEOPLE WRITING THIS SHIT. You need to straighten yourself up you whore.
  • guest_5120 : I don't understand how the headline "VT Deputy Attorney General Helped Stepbrother Atty Robinson Avoid Sexual Misconduct Lawsuit" has been covered up for years. They must have some people helping to sweep up this mess. Imagine the things that create this kind of headline. All I can think is, what are these brothers hiding and now we know for sure that they do hide gross misconduct. What else happened to this secretary?
  • guest_955 : I'm about to be forced into bankruptcy over the situation and no lawyer seems to be willing to do anything about my financial disaster caused by the lawyer who did the probate....
  • guest_8793 : You can add a story right here
  • guest_955 : Lawyer issued deed before court affirmed the sell of the property. He also "forgot" to include one of the previous owners in the probate.
  • guest_955 : How is it a lawyer in Missouri cannot be held financially responsible for a probate being done extre
  • guest_3209 : How can I file a complaint against a family law attorney in michigan?
  • Michelle Goldsmith : I'd like to put in a complaint against a attorney Stephan Swift in cedar rapids Iowa
  • guest_8091 : Hello, does anyone know how I can remove false information from this site? I've submitted a request but have not received a response.
  • Smithk252 : Hey would you mind letting me know which web host you're working with? I've loaded your blog in 3 completely different internet browsers and I must say this blog loads a lot faster then most. Can you suggest a good internet hosting provider at a fair price? Kudos, I appreciate it! ekacbbecfcedabcg
  • guest_3335 : Where is the oversight of Iowa's psychopathic judges ? Search: Iowa Corrupt Judges Courts Police 2, see names in comments
  • guest_9717 : yes
  • kk : Is this right website to file complaint against a lawyer? THX!
  • guest_9717 : you can file your story right here to start
  • guest_3291 : Can anyone tell me how to report a public defender stephenswiftin Iowa and judge Williams cedar rapids Iowa for not defending a client and the judge heard there was no evidence and still sided with the officers lies,they both broke the Brady law!!
  • guest_4436 : Can anyone tell me anything about the Meriwether and Tharp Atty group in Georgia? I am having a difficult time with one of their associate atty
  • guest_4436 : Is there anyone that can help with an atty named charlotte Rubble? (forsyth) County Georgia atty
  • guest_1893 : Iowa Judges and justices withhold exonerating evidence in order to obtain convictions. Where is the accountability? You Tube: IOWA CORRUPT JUDGES COURTS POLICE 2, see comments for specific details. -Dr. Kenneth Tennant
  • guest_1893 : Official Misconduct is Evidenced but oversight authorities remain depravedly Indifferent, including FBI. You Tube: Iowa Corrupt Judges Courts Police 2, see comments for details
  • guest_1893 : You Tube: Iowa Corrupt Judges Courts Police 2
  • guest_7735 : Not certain of which topic is in discussion? Lost reading multiple discussions about totally different issues?
  • guest_6057 : FBI WILL BE INFORMED BY TOMORROW.
  • guest_6057 : PEOPLE NEEDS TO BE CAREFUL AND PROTECTED AGAINST THIS SHANT OHANIAN...
  • guest_6057 : Pasadena attorney "Shant Ohanian" disbarred over seven counts of moral turpitude
  • guest_6057 : Anyone know where we can find Shant Ohanian?
  • guest_8524 : I thought this was about Matthew maclean
  • guest_5046 : Utah law what a joke. Attorneys Another joke. Not a damn thing you can do about it. Crooked to the core.
  • guest_4471 : Hey guest_9826 so what is your name? LOL
  • guest_9826 : Guest4290. Be careful... If you'd like to elaborate I recommend you do it with a name, rather than hide behind a number.
  • guest_2081 : I heard he’s actually Saddam Hussein in disguise 🤪
  • guest_9917 : Shit canbthe lazy bastard
  • guest_1668 : You were lucky Robert.
  • Robert Herman : Bret is my friend and my attorney for many years now and has always showed up any time I needed him. so i think your claim is false
  • guest_3458 : Stay the fuck away in Jesus name offenders
  • guest_4347 : funny how this comes out just as the bundytrial is underway.sounds like another setup.brett whipple is doing a wonderful job in court right now.
  • guest_504 : If anyone no jauns whereabouts can you please tell him that I will become looking for him I will pass by his mom and dad house I also up there by his brother's house is being a mother house and his kids school we will find them so for his best bet somebody please tell this man get in contact with me.because for what he owe me we have to see each other
  • guest_4290 : Joe Romley is a scumbag attorney. He took my money and then never returned calls
  • guest_7574 : brett whipple,s paralegal " tatum " is fair and honest in my experience Robert saccavino
  • Admin : Mr Bret Whipple's office contacted this website today and tried to offer money to remove the factual information against him. He was denied as this website will never accept funds for a removal of information.
  • guest_9703 : Nipple nipple
  • guest_7367 : It is Bret Whipple
  • guest_8108 : How do I file a complaints against Brent Whipple to the bar
  • guest_6032 : Thank you guest 9946. When the Cal State Bar atty approves this practice of law, and then 3 yrs later, reverses his decision and tells you to pay back everybody or else.. (these complainers are still in their homes fyi),... don't you think that's a bit ridiculous and unfair on the Bar's decision? The Bar has some real problems. SB atty needs to be dismissed in my opinion, waffling like he did to this ethical firm, and not admitting his wrong...smh
  • guest_7436 : He was in prison, raped a little firl ans he's a lawyer? Am i missing sonething?
  • guest_2184 : And what would your name be?
  • guest_9946 : Funny how someone will blast a person without knowing all of the facts. This is a fabrication and an ethical man is being destroyed under false pretenses. Do your homework before you destroy a good and moral mans life. Or have the courage to speak using your own name.
  • guest_8326 : What's with the Wesley Snipes Wanted Poster? It's in poor taste and you should remove it! He's not in jail anymore and thisvisntvabout him, it's about this Criminal Lawyer😡
  • guest_7259 : It is about time these criminals are exposed. Nice Job!!
  • guest_2674 : Why did it take so long?
  • 415taxi : what does legalmatch.com and the toll roads have in common? they both take advantage of you.
  • guest_7228 : Word around town is this guy, Mr. Shubov, taking advantage of little girls and his company LegalMatch are to be avoided at all costs. Not a moral fiber in his body and his company is corrupt, selling a service that doesn't work.
  • guest_7473 : All I see on Facebook is bad stuff about lawyers and judges. I bet there is more corrupt lawyers and judges in this country,,than drug dealers and thieves.
  • guest_4256 : Its the JUST THIS SYSTEM.
  • guest_4256 : The second a lawyer graduates law school, they should be loaded on a bus, and taken right to JAIL.
  • guest_4256 : Its getting to the point that there is no sense in going to court for anything,,,its ALL B/S.The lawyers and judges are going to ruin this country. Its coming to where people will just take matters into their own hands.
  • guest_4256 : They are ALL a bunch of S/BAG THIEVES AND LIARS.
  • guest_4597 : Theives
  • guest_6767 : pervert
  • guest_3003 : WOW! just came across this. I know someone who worked for that legal match company last year and they said he and the other person that run this company are the worst. pretty much selling a product that doesn't work for an alarming # of lawyers.
  • guest_8077 : the company LegalTRAP (aka legalmatch) make money three fold, 1. sue the atty who dont want thier sh*t leads because they are locked in some BS contract and would do any just to get out of it. 2. Take the same sh*t lead subscription and sell it to another desperate Atty (i.e. Fresh Grad from Law school who would do anything for that one awesome case) 3. Do a commission Charge back the Sales person who sold the the previous atty who wanted out.
  • guest_8077 : The company is crap.
  • guest_8077 : Also this guy Is so in love with himself.
  • guest_8077 : All those Talking good about him on this Post are either Employees that were pressured to write awesome things about him or Interns that he gave a lot of empty promises to.
  • guest_7832 : I notice people think we all are talking about two different people here, but this slimeball is guilty of both sexually assaulting a 14 year old girl AND had previously served prison time for stealing/deleting information from another company.
  • guest_8441 : https://jonathanturley.org/2017/10/31/not-so-legalmatch-disbarred-lawyer-facing-charges-of-sexual-assault-on-a-minor/
  • guest_8444 : I think guest_7332 is this rapist named Dmitry! So defensive. Deport this felon! Why is this not major news?
  • guest_5887 : What a schmuck
  • guest_831 : Definite pattern here. There are just too many lawyers.
  • guest_7332 : You people are stupid. gets your facts straight. He did not serve 4 1/2 years in prison, actually less than the minimum of 1 1/2 years. You should immediately take this down!!!!
  • guest_2973 : He should be held accountable for not just the one account of sexual misconduct, but every account that is on record. Not sure why the perpetrator is not being held fully accountable. Inappropriate boundaries were crossed and there is an obvious use and display of him using his power for his own personal gain (in this instance, to get his sexual needs met). As we know from our current state of affairs, these perpetrators don't strike only once.
  • guest_1632 : So glad justice was served
  • guest_3132 : Great story though. Thompson lost his home,wife,family,money,friends,status,and reputation. Karma at it's best. Just sucks for people affected by this CROOK.
  • guest_3132 : If everyone is commenting on Thompson. This guy is big time crook and lots of people lost their home and lots of money. He should be serving time but can't be found bc he is hiding from justice. I know this bc I'm one of the victims who lost a home and 10's of thousands of $$. HE IS A CROOK.
  • guest_6428 : The legal profession is riddled with criminals.
  • TH : I think this thread must be talking about different people.
  • innocent mother : My son wants to come back home. I want my son back. Stop blackmailing me
  • guest_3603 : And for the record its not someone thinks anything theres proof.and now his time to pay up dont go away cuz hes a spoiled slickster that's finally getting exposed
  • guest_3603 : His dad is dr.labadie at west jeff ogbyn and one of his brothers is the president of the same hospital so if money was the answer he have Avenues to make money.the question is y is he hiding
  • TH : Just because you think you are owed monies does not make it true. He still has a right to monies owed him for his work. You want to blame someone, blame the ODC. If you cut a persons legs off, they can’t walk. If he can’t work as an attorney, he can’t remedy you (provided you are owed anything).
  • guest_3603 : Where he at so i can face him and he can remedy me guest_6477
  • Joe : He was never arrested for drugs. It was a rumor started by a group of lawyers to try and destroy his credibility. The injustices that have occurred in that town are unbelievable. It is full of corrupt lawyers and judges and law enforcement. The whole lot of them should be tried.
  • guest_8100 : Drug charges, that’s laughable. Obvious that facts mean nothing to you. I agree with previous person. He helped me time and time again and didn’t charge me a cent. He was an awesome coach and this is all bull$h!t!
  • guest_6477 : This has been a witch hunt and is full of false “facts”. He is a good man, father, husband, coach and attorney. You measure a person by the way he falls, I measure him by the way he rises.
  • guest_6477 : He is a fellow colleague of mine and because of the interim suspension, he was prevented from working on his clients behalf. This has been a witxh
  • guest_6477 : ...which she agreed to but did not compensate him. He has given much to this community and helped many with zero compensation. He is owed hundreds of thousands of dollars. His whereabouts are known as he is trying to remedy any person he harmed.
  • guest_6477 : Your facts are wrong. He was never arrested for drugs and does not do drugs. I’ve know him all my life. He had an interim suspension because of a claim which prevented him from completing his duty to his clients. This was brought about by a disgruntled client’s daughter who felt she was owed money from her family members’s suit. This suspension prevented him from earning a living so he could make restitution. This client in question had him perform other services for her family membe
  • guest_4980 : Guest _2656 how do you know he didn't scam people. Awful strong remarks if you have not been on the other side of the story. He caused this don't blame game here. He's quilty of a lot of things. Not doing his job and being arrested for cocaine not once. So I'm not judging you I'm starting facts and you are defending obviously a friend of yours a suspension due to drug charges. Public is not as stupid as you people in the court house and system think we are. Go join him. If it was a regular perso
  • guest_7949 : He's a scumbag. Just the tip of the iceberg. He's ripped off many people. Should be in jail!!!
  • guest_9016 : This dude is hiding and the court is help him.he owes alot of ppl money and dont have to pay it back and was a client that he was trying to get me time cuz he kno he ran off with my money
  • guest_2656 : Ridiculous! This attorney stole zero! He was prohibited from completing his work for his clients because of a suspension that should not have occurred. A witch hunt was carried out by the very people he spent his life trying to help. He was owed hundreds of thousands of dollars which the LA Bar Association failed to help him recoup. This is Louisiana politics at its worst.
  • Joe : Nice to see lots of lawyers going to jail.
  • Mike : Crazy Story..
  • guest_5706 : This lawyer is a wack job!
  • guest_1134 : Why does it take so long to investigate these crimes?
  • John : Cool feature

Long-Time Phoenix Attorney Joe Romley Still Practices Despite Scandalous Involvement in Shady Cases – Civil Case Fraud RICO and Arrested in Sex Scandal with Ties to Crime Family

The legal profession expects a great deal of effort to create a persona of ethical respectability for the individual attorney. Unfortunately, this whole fallacy is based on smoke and mirrors. As this website documents, there are THOUSANDS of unethical attorneys that are daily threatening the public with their repeated malfeasance. In Arizona, such an attorney is Joe M. Romley of Phoenix who has practiced law for 52 YEARS (September, 1965). Far too many lawyers simply know no decency. When you pull back the curtain of deception, attorney Joe M. Romley has quite the shameful career history, just a few specific examples that are documented:

Attorney Romley named in Civil Suits as a Defendant by a few parties:

Plaintiff James P. Elia alleged FRAUD in Arizona case no. CV1992-015891with Attorney Romley listed as a Defendant.

Plaintiff Steven J. Valentine sues in civil lawsuit in Arizona case no. CV2002-017008 against both Attorney Romley and his wife Toni Romley.

Plaintiff Linda Vela alleged a multitude of serious claims including FRAUD in Arizona case  no. CV1999-001968 against Attorney Romley and his law Practice. The specifics associated with this case require further detail to understand the full scope of impropriety by attorney Romley. See below.

Some of Romley’s infamous criminal clients drew enough attention of law enforcement to exercise the very rare raid via search warrant upon a law office for Joe Romley associated with an investigation of active participation in a “massive money-laundering and racketeering operation.”

The criminal cases surrounding the topless-and-nude-club-empire of the notorious Aldabbagh crime family. Further details are provided to understand the sordid affair. See below.

THE LINDA VELA LAWSUIT:

The synopsis of the Vela lawsuit is she had been involved in a contentious divorce with her husband. It was alleged that her husband had conspired with a number of people in a complex scheme to hide millions of dollars from the marital estate. Vela filed a lawsuit seeking damages for against those who had participated in the conspiracy which included attorney Romley. In the middle of the trial, after very damaging evidence had been presented to the jury a settlement was offered by Romley and accepted. Some VERY interesting finding of facts had been ruled upon by the Court prior to the settlement. The full details of the FRAUD are not known as a condition of the settlement required the facts of Romley’s activities to be SEALED. However, we do know this much from the two different Court rulings:

#1: The Court conclude that Romley engaged in a pattern of racketeering activity as contemplated under A.R.S. § 13-2314.04 and that the acts of alleged racketeering were continuous or exhibited a threat of being continuous.

#2: There is both direct and circumstantial evidence that Romley knowingly engaged in this scheme and artifice to defraud Vela and conspired with the other attorney defendants or aided and abetted the other attorney defendants in their fraudulent scheme to aid and assist Valentine in defrauding Vela (for full disclosure – the full ruling is provided below).

 


JOE M ROMLEY ARRESTED IN SEX SCANAL

Romley’s ties and allegations swirled around Sex-Club family Aldabbagh involving “massive” money laundering and racketeering operation”:

It is important to note that attorney Romley’s ties with the Aldabbagh crime family were not limited to being the lawyer. The criminal investigation of Romley had been designated to go beyond just legal representation; they would involve determining active participation in the various criminal operations.

As reported by the Phoenix New Times:

LISTEN UP, LAWYERS

Amid the orgy of publicity last week following the made-for-television police raids of the Aldabbagh family's topless- and nude-club empire, the arrest of Phoenix attorney Joe Romley was barely a footnote.

But while time will tell if police have unearthed the massive money-laundering and racketeering operation they claim, Romley's arrest is already drawing incredulous reaction within the legal community. And some attorneys fear it is an outrageous scare tactic intended to warn lawyers off cases involving alleged crime leaders.

Romley, cousin of former Maricopa County Attorney Richard Romley, is a respected civil lawyer and longtime member of an established Phoenix firm, Robbins and Green. He was caught in the sweep of the so-called Aladdin" investigation because he did some legal work for Omar Aldabbagh, painted as a racketeering kingpin by investigators.

Exactly what crime Romley supposedly committed remains unknown. He was arrested on an open-ended charge of illegally conducting an enterprise and released. Police descended on his office with a search warrant and carted away his files and records relating to Aldabbagh.

No formal charges have been filed against him, however, or against any of the 37 others arrested in the raids.

Instead, Romley and the other defendants wait in limbo as investigators sift through thousands of seized documents and decide what charges to file against whom.

But simply by arresting Romley, his colleagues in the legal community fear, police and prosecutors have crossed a sacred line in trying to hold legitimate attorneys criminally accountable for the sins of their clients.

The issue of attorneys' being charged along with their clients has been simmering nationally for years. Increasingly, criminal defense attorneys claim, prosecutors are using racketeering statutes to go after lawyers in an effort to deprive alleged kingpins of legal counsel.

The practice, attorneys say, flies in the face of any defendant's right to counsel, and exposes attorneys to prosecution-or at least public embarrassment-for doing precisely what they are supposed to do: telling clients how to remain within the law.

It is the practice of prosecutors...to try to discourage professionals-lawyers, accountants, appraisers-from providing services to people they view as unsavory," says attorney Paul Eckstein of Brown and Bain, who has known Romley since high school. It's just firing one across the bow of all lawyers saying, `You better be careful, folks, because you're going to be arrested and your name is going to be besmirched.'"

Investigators say Romley's arrest was more than just a warning shot, but Lieutenant David Gonzales, who ramrodded the Arizona Department of Public Safety's nine-month investigation of the Aldabbagh enterprises, says he cannot comment on what criminal charges Romley may ultimately face. He was the attorney for Omar [Aldabbagh] and the charges will stem from his involvement as his attorney," Gonzales says.

Steve Tseffos, spokesman for Attorney General Grant Woods, whose office will prosecute the cases, also said he could not elaborate on what charges Romley might face, because investigators are still piecing together the evidence.

We have a lot of seized stuff," Tseffos says. Now you go through it and see if you have enough evidence to support a criminal case."

But if investigators still have to determine whether they have a case, why was Romley arrested, attorneys ask?

I found it somewhat strange to learn they arrested [Romley] and apparently had no intent of filing charges against him at the time," says Philip Robbins of Robbins and Green, the firm where Romley works.

Gonzalez says police had probable cause to arrest Romley and the others, even if the formal charges they may face have yet to be determined. There were numerous reasons why we did the arrests," Gonzales says. A lot of the suspects involved in this case were transient by nature. We wanted to ID all these people. We wanted to get them mugged and fingerprinted."

Investigators didn't think Romley was likely to blow town, Gonzales said, but we felt that if we were going to arrest Joe Blow the driver from Iraq, it would be discriminatory not to arrest Joe Romley, the big-time defense attorney."

So what did Romley do for Aldabbagh that warranted his arrest? Romley did not return repeated telephone calls, and his attorney, Steve Dichter, would not comment.

But Philip Robbins of Robbins and Green, where Romley has worked for 15 years, says Romley only helped Aldabbagh from time to time with routine legal work. This is supported by records at Maricopa County Superior Court, which indicate that Romley was not even Aldabbagh's primary civil attorney. In four cases in which Aldabbagh has been sued over the past few years, Romley was his attorney in only two of them.

Romley was not an officer or director of any of the myriad companies Aldabbagh set up to conduct his business, Robbins says. It was simply straight-up corporate-type work involving forming corporations and doing zoning work," Robbins says.

Work for Aldabbagh made up only a minuscule" part of Romley's duties at the firm, which include a range of corporate, divorce and civil work, Robbins says.

Both Robbins and Eckstein find it hard to believe that Romley crossed any legal lines in his dealings with Aldabbagh.

This is a guy who I would describe as an extremely hardworking, ethical, upright, decent guy," says Eckstein of Romley.

IF YOU LIKE THIS STORY, CONSIDER SIGNING UP FOR OUR EMAIL NEWSLETTERS.

SHOW ME HOW

When fallout from the case finally settles, Robbins says he does not believe investigators will find anything to prosecute Romley for. My guess is he probably isn't going to be charged," Robbins says.

But the taint of having been arrested along with Aldabbagh in a case that the Phoenix media immediately whipped into a sex empire" crackdown may have been all investigators wanted to accomplish, Eckstein says.

If you're going to read your name in the newspaper as being connected with someone, or be arrested in your office and have your office ransacked, that's a pretty good way to discourage competent legal counsel for people who may be living on the edge," Eckstein says.


Source: Phoenix New Times

Phoenix Attorney Joe Romley Being Investigated for Involvement with the Aldabbagh Sex-Club Family

The case of the sex-club empire of Paradise Valley resident Omar Aldabbagh and his family

A police investigation aimed at a family of Middle Eastern immigrants that lord over Phoenix's sex-club scene

Phoenix Attorney Joe Romley cousin of former Maricopa County Attorney Rick Romley was one of the four lawyers whose offices were searched. However, prosecutors say they considered Joe Romley a suspect in the case, and Department of Public Safety agents searched his office in that capacity, not necessarily as an attorney for the Aldabbaghs.

"Mr. Romley was the suspect in a crime, yet strong safeguards were taken by a judge and the police.

According to several people close to the case, Omar Aldabbagh's defense attorney, Mike Kimerer, was present during the search. Joe Romley hasn't been charged, though a state grand jury continues to investigate the well-publicized racketeering case.

 


Related story detailing the reported Adabbagh family business history:

Sex-club king may be back in business

PHOENIX – State prosecutors fear the owner of a string of nude and topless bars they thought they had run out of town is still doing business here.

A plea agreement with the state Attorney General’s Office called for Omar Aldabbagh, the primary target of a Arizona Department of Public Safety raid on 13 nude and topless establishments, to divest control of his sexually oriented businesses within 18 months.

He also was required to serve three years’ probation and forfeit $366,000 worth of assets.

But since a plea agreement hearing where he told court officials he intended to operate a limousine or car-rental business in Las Vegas, Aldabbagh reportedly has quietly continued to negotiate transactions with his brother-in-law, Gregory Welling.

Aldabbagh, who continues to live in his opulent Paradise Valley home, also continues as a landlord for at least two clubs. And, he’s laying plans to continue to collect rent from another of his topless bars.

After learning last week of Welling’s plans to buy the club, officials at the Arizona Department of Liquor Licenses and Control were concerned that Aldabbagh was in business again.

In the earlier case, Aldabbagh and a close associate were accused of using shell corporations and hidden ownerships to confuse regulators and police about their interests in the chain of clubs.

“There’s no hidden ownership,’ Welling said. “If we were trying to hide something, would we actually write a letter to the Liquor Board and to the attorney general and say, `Look, this is it. We have a relationship, but we’re trying to do a business deal.’ ‘

In May, the Liquor Department approved Welling’s application for a liquor license to operate My Place, a soon-to-be opened bar in west Phoenix next door to Eve’s Tease, a nude bar formerly operated by Aldabbagh and now leased by Welling.

State Liquor Director Howard Adams said the application apparently slipped through the system.

Adams said he will begin an investigation into Aldabbagh’s financial and other relationships to Welling and the two bars, My Place and the Body Shoppe.

In the earlier case, Aldabbagh and a close associate were accused of using shell corporations and hidden ownerships to confuse regulators and police about their interests in the chain of clubs.

Source: Tucson Citizen

Investigators say Romley's arrest was more than just a warning shot, but Lieutenant David Gonzales, who ramrodded the Arizona Department of Public Safety's nine-month investigation of the Aldabbagh enterprises, says he cannot comment on what criminal charges Romley may ultimately face. He was the attorney for Omar Aldabbagh and the charges will stem from his involvement as his attorney," Gonzales says.


THE FULL RULING BY THE CIVIL COURT IN THE LINDA VELA VS. JOE ROMLEY LAWSUITS:

MINUTE ENTRY CV1999-001968 – Linda Vela Case

The Court having taken Defendant, Joe Romley's ("Romley") Motion for Partial Summary Judgment under advisement; having reviewed the memoranda of the parties and legal authorities cited therein; having considered the oral argument of counsel; and good cause appearing,

IT IS ORDERED granting said motion with respect to Count XXIV of the Complaint, the Arizona Racketeering Act ("AZRAC") claim for relief, the Court finding that the Plaintiff has failedto present competent evidence upon which a reasonable juror could conclude that Romley engaged in a pattern of racketeering activity as contemplated under A.R.S. § 13-2314.04 and that the acts of alleged racketeering were continuous or exhibited a threat of being continuous.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED denying Romley's motion with respect to all other claims for relief asserted against him in Counts XXII through XXVII of the Second Amended Complaint, the Court finding that there are genuine issues of material fact which preclude the granting of summary judgment on each of these claims. The Court, in reaching its decision finds that there is an abundance of evidence and a prior court determination that Steve Valentine ("Valentine"), without question, engaged in a scheme together with his mother, Sue Valentine, to defraud the Plaintiff, Linda Vela ("Vela"), Valentine's former wife, during the course of the Valentine divorce. There is also little question that to accomplish his fraudulent activity, Valentine relied heavily upon his accountant and attorneys. There are serious questions as to whether his accountant and attorneys knew or reasonably should have known that he was using their services for purposes of defrauding the Plaintiff. However, based upon the suspect testimony of Valentine and the testimony of Defendant, Jerry Angle ("Angle"), coupled with an abundance of circumstantial evidence which is subject to multiple interpretation, there are genuine issues of material fact which preclude judgment on all but Count XXIV of the claims asserted against Romley. There is competent, admissible evidence to suggest that there was a scheme or artifice to defraud Linda Vela and deprive her of her share of the marital estate, which was made possible through the knowing efforts of Romley and Angle. This Court does not believe that there is competent evidence to suggest that Romley knew at the time Valentine and Vela entered into their settlement agreement pursuant to Rule 80(d), Ariz.R.Civ.P., that Valentine did not intend to fulfill his obligations under the settlement agreement. There is however evidence that he, through various alleged communications with Angle, Defendant Quinn Williams ("Williams"), Defendant Judith Wolf ("Wolf") and Valentine became aware of Valentine's intent to renege or not participate in good faith in the settlement agreement, and then subsequently lent aid to him in the fraudulent transfer and/or encumbering of marital assets. There is both direct and circumstantial evidence that Romley knowingly engaged in this scheme and artifice to defraud Vela and conspired with the other attorney defendants or aided and abetted the other attorney defendants in their fraudulent scheme to aid and assist Valentine in defrauding Vela. While Counts XXV, XXVI and XVII may be duplicative of the allegations set forth in the fraud claim, Count XXIV, the Court, at this time, is not prepared to strike them. The Court will reserve judgment on this issue until the time that Plaintiff has rested her case. The Court, in allowing the conspiracy claim, Count XXV to remain, is not determining this juncture that there is adequate evidence to sustain liability on a joint rather than several basis.

Arizona still recognizes that there can be a civil conspiracy to perpetrate a fraud. However, unless there is ample evidence to demonstrate that a person has acted in concert with another under the dictates of A.R.S. § 12-2506(F)(1), liability between co-conspirators is several, not joint. While there are genuine issues of material fact which preclude summary judgment on the acting in concert issue in this case, the evidence in support of Plaintiff's claim that Romley acted in concert with the other attorney defendants in this case is tenuous at best. A conspiracy can involve an express or tacit agreement, and from a criminal perspective, does not require any overt act to be committed in furtherance thereof. To act in concert within the meaning of A.R.S. § 12-2506(F)(1) for purposes of holding tort feasors jointly liable, one must enter into a "conscious agreement to pursue a common plan or design to commit an intentional tort and actively taking part in that intentional tort." A.R.S. § 2506(F)(1) further states that "[a] person's conduct which provides substantial assistance to one committing an intentional tort does not constitute acting in concert if the person has not consciously agreed with the other to commit the intentional tort." One could well engage in a civil conspiracy without entering into a conscious agreement to pursue a common plan or design to commit an intentional tort and without actively taking part in the commission of an intentional tort. While it will be difficult for the Plaintiff to sustain her burden of proof regarding her conspiracy claims, it will be even more difficult to sustain her burden for purposes of establishing that any of the Defendants acted in concert within the purview of the Arizona statute.


Attorney Joe Romley has quite the online reputation continues to get bad online reviews and has been accused of not returning monies and not providing services as promised. (Source AVVO)

One would hope, and be generally inclined to believe, “experience” would represent a positive qualification for someone in the legal profession. Unfortunately, the reality consistently demonstrates the polar opposite. As in the case of attorney Joe Romely who has been an Arizona licensed attorney with over 50 YEARS experience (admitted during the President Lyndon Johnson administration – wow) has only served to develop the means to circumvent the Rules of Professional Conduct with unethical violations to the public's detriment. Furthermore, with a review of how the judicial system actually operates in real time - real world it seems that rogue lawyers are protected from any significant accountability. Attorney Romley’s portfolio includes multiple fraud claims by a number of private citizens and has even included criminal investigations for his association with a sex enterprise crime family. His law offices were raided by law enforcement, not something that happens often with ethical law firms to say the least. It has been surmised the facts associated with the criminal associations were conveniently “washed away” due to a direct family relation of being the first cousin to the local District Attorney (a fact).

In conclusion, after studying the sordid history of attorney Romley's legal career one is left with the unavoidable question – how in the world does this happen? What is the public to do to protect themselves if faced with the always anxious possibility of dealing with a judicial system infested with unsavory characters cloaked in the illusion of credibility of being a licensed attorney with lots of EXPERIENCE? The uncomfortable truth, CROSS YOUR FINGERS you do not retain a lawyer of the Joe Romley ilk.

We will be following up on the Attorney Joe Romley story in the near future. Please check back for updates.