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David Peilet Complaint

David Peilet Complaint

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Published by Justice Café
DECISION FROM DISCIPLINARY REPORTS AND DECISIONS SEARCH


BEFORE THE HEARING BOARD OF THE ILLINOIS ATTORNEY REGISTRATION AND DISCIPLINARY COMMISSION

In the Matter of:

DAVID JAY PEILET,

Attorney-Respondent,

No. 6198458.
DECISION FROM DISCIPLINARY REPORTS AND DECISIONS SEARCH


BEFORE THE HEARING BOARD OF THE ILLINOIS ATTORNEY REGISTRATION AND DISCIPLINARY COMMISSION

In the Matter of:

DAVID JAY PEILET,

Attorney-Respondent,

No. 6198458.

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Published by: Justice Café on Apr 30, 2013
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DECISION FROM DISCIPLINARY REPORTS AND DECISIONS SEARCH BEFORE THE HEARING BOARD OF THE ILLINOIS ATTORNEY REGISTRATION ANDDISCIPLINARY COMMISSIONIn the Matter of:DAVID JAY PEILET,Attorney-Respondent, No. 6198458. Commission No. 2012PR00042FILED - April 30, 2012COMPLAINTJerome Larkin, Administrator of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission, by hisattorney, Marita C. Sullivan, pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 753(b), complains of Respondent, DavidJay Peilet, who was licensed to practice law in Illinois on November 10, 1988, and alleges thatRespondent has engaged in the following conduct which tends to defeat the administration of justice or to bring the courts or the legal profession into disrepute, and which subjects Respondent to discipline pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 770:COUNT I(Conversion of $3,948 Bond Refund in Angel Montiel's criminal matter)1. On or about February 17, 2010, Chicago Police Officers arrested Angel Montiel ("Montiel")following an incident in which Montiel allegedly sold 14 grams of cocaine to an undercover policeofficer.2. On or about March 10, 2010, a Cook County grand jury returned an indictment against Montiel for the offense of delivering a controlled substance of more than 5 grams of cocaine, in violation of 720ILCS 570/401(c)(2), in the matter entitled People of the State of Illinois v. Angel Montiel, case number 10 CR 4652.3. On or about March 25, 2010, Respondent and Montiel agreed that Respondent would representMontiel in matters relating to case number 10 CR 4652 for a fee of $2,000. Respondent and Montielfurther agreed that Montiel would make payments toward the fee during the pendency of his case.4. On or about April 1, 2010, Respondent filed his appearance as counsel for Montiel in case number 10 CR 4652. On that date, Respondent also entered a plea of not guilty on behalf of Montiel, and filedan answer to the State's discovery request.5. On or about June 4, 2010, Montiel's girlfriend, Erika Reyes ("Reyes"), posted a $5,000 bail bond on
 
Montiel's behalf, and Montiel was released from jail.6. On or about December 6, 2010, Metropolitan Water Reclamation Police Officers stopped Montielnear Harlem Avenue and Interstate 55 for allegedly not stopping at a stop sign. At that time, the policeofficers issued a complaint against Montiel for disobeying a stop sign and driving on a suspendedlicense, in violation of 625 ILCS 5/1204(b) and 625 ILCS 5/6-303, respectively, in the matter entitledPeople of the State of Illinois v. Angel Montiel, case numbers YM-490-435 and 436, in the CircuitCourt of Cook County, Fifth Municipal District ("traffic matter").7. Shortly after Montiel's traffic arrest, Respondent and Montiel agreed that Respondent wouldrepresent Montiel in the traffic matter for a fee of $500.8. Between March 2010 and December 2010, Montiel paid Respondent $2,000 towards his total legalfee of $2,500 for case number 10 CR 4652 and the traffic matter.9. On December 21, 2010, Montiel pled guilty in case number 10 CR 4652. On that date, the HonorableThomas J. Hennelly sentenced Montiel to two years in the Illinois Department of Corrections.10. While in court on December 21, 2010, Respondent, Montiel, and Reyes, who was also present for the court proceedings, discussed the disposition of the $5,000 cash bond refund referred to in paragraphfive, above. During their discussion, Respondent told Montiel and Reyes that the State's AttorneysOffice required additional money from Montiel for court costs. Respondent also asked Montiel to signover the remainder of the refund of his bail bond to Respondent to pay the $500 in legal fees still owedRespondent. Respondent, Montiel and Reyes agreed that after Respondent received the bond refundcheck, he would keep the $500 he was still owed for legal fees, and disburse the remaining amount toReyes, who had posted the bond for Montiel's release.11. On or about December 28, 2010, the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County issued check number 5314412 from Amalgamated Bank. That check had been made payable to Respondent in theamount of $4,500, and represented the amount of the bond refund in case number 10 CR 4652 after adeduction of $500 for the payment of court costs, and sent it to Respondent pursuant to a bondassignment. Respondent received the check shortly thereafter.12. On or about January 11, 2011, Respondent appeared in the Circuit Court of Cook County, FifthMunicipal District, on behalf of Montiel for the first scheduled court date in the traffic matter. On thatdate, the Honorable Terence Smith granted the States Attorney's motion to strike the case with leave toreinstate, and the traffic matter was dismissed.13. On or about February 8, 2011, Respondent deposited check number 5314412 into a Northern Trustaccount ending in the last four digits 2351. That account was entitled "David J. Peilet, Attorney at Law,Client Fund Account," and was used by Respondent for the depository and disbursement of property of clients or third persons in Respondent's possession ("client trust account").14. Between February and May 2011, Reyes telephoned Respondent at least once a month, requestingthat Respondent return the amount due her from the bond refund. On each of those occasions whenReyes reached Respondent, he told Reyes that he would send her a check the following month.15. As of May 19, 2011, Respondent had not returned the $4,000 of the bond refund due Reyes. On thatdate, Reyes sent a letter to Respondent stating that beginning in February 2011, each time she contacted
 
Respondent, he had promised to give her a check, but she had received nothing from Respondent. Inher letter, Reyes requested that Respondent respond to her request for the bond refund within thirtydays. Respondent received the letter shortly after it was sent.16. As of June 21, 2011, Respondent had not paid Reyes the $4000 from the bond refund that he hadagreed to pay her.17. As of June 21, 2011, the balance in Respondent's client trust account was $51.19, and Respondenthad used $3,948.81 of the $4,000 bond proceeds he should have returned to Reyes for his own businessor personal purposes.18. At no time did Montiel or Reyes, or anyone on their behalf, authorize Respondent to keep or use the$4,000 he was to return to Reyes from the bond refund.19. As of April 30, 2012, the date a panel of the Inquiry Board voted that a complaint be filed in thismatter, Respondent had not returned the $4,000 to Reyes or Montiel.20. By reason of the conduct described above, Respondent has engaged in the following misconduct:a. conversion; b. failure to comply with a client's reasonable requests for information, in violation of Rule 1.4(a) of the Illinois Rules of Professional Conduct;c. conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation, in violation of Rule 8.4(c) of theIllinois Rules of Professional Conduct;d. conduct that is prejudicial to the administration of justice, in violation of Rule 8.4(d) of the IllinoisRules of Professional Conduct; ande. conduct which tends to defeat the administration of justice, or to bring the courts or the legal profession into disrepute.COUNT II(Failure to Respond to a Lawful Demand for Information)21. The Administrator realleges paragraphs 1 through 19 of Count I, above.22. On June 28, 2011, the Administrator received a request for investigation of a lawyer from Reyesand Montiel, requesting that the Commission investigate Respondent's handling of Montiel's bondrefund, as alleged in Count I, above. The Administrator docketed the matter and assigned it casenumber 2011IN02888.23. On August 26 and September 22, 2011, respectively, counsel for the Administrator sent letters toRespondent requesting that he submit a written response and provide the Administrator withinformation relating to Montiel and Reyes' charge, including documents and records relating to thematter. Respondent received the letters shortly after they were sent.24. On September 27, 2011, Respondent submitted a written response to the allegations raised in case

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