Anthony J. Kassas, 35, Diamond Bar, California, state bar number 227647, accused of a massive loan modification scam that victimized more than 50 distressed homeowners is facing disbarment by default.
Kassas was the subject of the most extensive disciplinary charging document in recent State Bar history – 285 counts of misconduct involving 56 clients, contained within a 260-page notice of disciplinary charges filed April 6, 2012. The State Bar Court filed an order on September 11, 2012, entering Kassas‘ default and placing him on inactive status after he failed three times to appear to testify at his trial. Unless the default is set aside, Kassas‘ disbarment will be recommended to the California Supreme Court.
As previously reported by Mortgage Fraud Blog, Kassas was one of several southern California attorneys charged with misconduct as a result of joint investigation by the State Bar’s Office of Chief Trial Counsel and the Attorney General’s office into law firms and marketing companies running so-called “mass joinder” scams. The scams tricked cash-strapped homeowners into thinking they were potential plaintiffs in a “national litigation settlement,” offering false promises including that their foreclosures would be stayed, their loan balances would be reduced or their homes would be free and clear of their mortgage.
Kassas is accused of improperly soliciting clients, collecting unlawful advance fees, failing to provide proper accounting of funds and aiding the unauthorized practice of law by non-lawyers. According to State Bar Court Judge Donald F. Miles’ recent order, Kassas was served a notice to appear to testify at his trial on September 5, 2012, but only his attorney showed up. The court issued an order that Kassas appear on Sept. 6 and another order on Sept. 10, but he failed to appear on either occasion. The court struck Kassas‘ responses to the charges and entered his default in the case.
Kassas has been ineligible to practice law since December 2011.