Greedy Associates - The FindLaw Legal Lifestyle and Career Blog

'Flight Risk' Lawyer Disappears After $550M Fraud Arrest

Attorney Eric Christopher Conn said he would flee to Cuba or Ecuador if he ever got caught.

Conn, awaiting sentencing in a $550 million fraud on the federal government, apparently has made good on his word. It was no surprise to those who knew him best, but a big surprise to those who only knew his public persona.

"He's not one to walk away from a fight," the narrator says in one of Conn's many advertisements.

Lawyer on the Lam

The flamboyant attorney has disappeared, leaving behind a broken ankle monitor and a trail of fake disability claims. He had pleaded guilty and was scheduled to be sentenced for his part in a Social Security fraud that brought in millions to his firm.

"I submitted or allowed the submission of medical records that I knew to be fraudulent in nature," Conn told U.S. District Judge Danny C. Reeves at his plea hearing.

The admission, which carries up to a 12-year-sentence, understated the breadth of the crime. According to reports, Conn included a judge, doctors, and others in the scheme involving more than 1,700 cases over a 12-year period.

Government workers first noticed a problem at an appeals office, where Conn presented cases to former judge David B. Daugherty. According to court records, Conn paid the judge about $10,000 a month for six years to rubber-stamp his cases.

We Told You So

After Conn was arrested last year, prosecutors asked the judge to keep him in jail pending trial because he was a flight risk. An FBI agent testified Conn told employees at his firm that he would flee to avoid criminal charges, and that he had wired large sums of money out of the country.

The judge released Conn on conditions, including an ankle monitor and a $1.25 million bond. "Your trust is not misplaced," he conned.

Mark Wohlander, who represents two former Social Security workers who blew the whistle on Conn, predicted early on that "the day would come when they would find his ankle bracelet lying on the ground at the Pikeville airport."

Related Resources: