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Private investigator probably lost opportunity to settle case before indictment July 30, 2009

Posted by jefhenningeresq in News.
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Jerry Panico of Staten Island, is accused of stealing $79,000 from Allstate Investigations by diverting funds from clients to his own bank account.  He was charged with second-degree theft by deception for allegedly conducting investigations for clients without his employer’s knowledge then had checks written made payable to himself and mailed to his home. 

That alleged theft totaled $30,000 and I would have no problem taking that case to trial.  However, he is also charged with stealing an additional $49,000 worth of checks made payable to Allstate by endorsing them and cashing them before being deposited into a fraudulent account he created in the company’s name.

He was fired in October of 2008, arrested in June and indicted this week.  This case is illustrative of advice that I often give but is rarely followed:  hire an attorney at the first sign of trouble.  Here, Panico was fired almost a year ago and he knew what was going on.  He should have hired a good attorney right away to resolve this before it even got to the police. 

For whatever reason, many people think that nothing bad will ever happen to them so they do nothing.  How do I know?  I have people come to me before law enforcement is involved but some of them seem to want  to find someone that will just agree with them.  As soon as I tell them that they need to take proactive action now, they assure me that nothing bad will ever happen.  Of course, that begs the question, why the hell are you in my office in the first place?  I have seen these people try to convince me that they know better only to read (and blog) about them later when they are arrested/indicted and sentenced to prison. 

You know you will never read about?  All the clients that came to me early on where I could work out a case and prevent them from ever getting arrested/convicted.  Those clients pay a smaller legal bill and have a lot less stress in their life. 

Story is here.

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Comments»

1. Jerry - August 4, 2009

I’m sure at the time of his arrest, he had not a clue – therefore, could not have hired a good lawyer in time.

If he accepted checks in his own name, this may qualify him as a sole proprietor under federal tax laws, and I’m assuming none of his clients are complaining about paying him. If he opened a bank account with the same name as Allstate, the prosecution has the burden to prove that he misrepresented himself and can possibly achieve this in a number of ways

An employee has the right to self employment. If he violated a confidentiality agreement or licensing issue, it’s a civil matter.

whitecollarcrimenews - August 4, 2009

Trust me Jerry, he knew months ago.

2. Tony DeLorenzo - October 20, 2009

Oct 19,2009

Jerry Panico pleaded guilty for 2nd degree Theft By Deception and received 4 years in prison. His sentencing date is Jan 8,2010. He got off very easy , courts wanted to close the file and move on


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