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June 2013 Archives

Florida man pleads guilty to $13 million fraud

Earlier this week, a Florida-based investment advisor who was once a candidate for Governor in Oregon pleaded guilty to charges that he organized a securities fraud scheme. According to federal law enforcement officials, 71 year old Craig L. Berkman bilked potential investors out of $13.2 million by claiming he owned shares Facebook and other popular tech companies right before they went public.

Florida's war on bongs gets national attention -- and criticism

When Rick Scott signed CS/CS/HB 49 -- Florida's new statute criminalizing the sale of bongs, even if not used for drug use -- into law, it hardly made local news here. Two weeks later, however, the national news media appears to have noticed our new felony drug charge for those caught selling drug paraphernalia a second time -- and it's the subject of some serious criticism.

Informant's lies could prove beneficial for drug convict

Many residents in Tampa, Florida have probably seen a crime procedural on TV where an informant helps the police with a case. The informant may be a bit disheveled; but he or she is knowledgeable about "the streets" or "the game" and they can get the information the police require to put away some drug dealer. It all makes for good television; but in the real world, that is rarely the way things work out. Informants do not always have that insider knowledge; and in some cases, they can make things up (or act nefariously) to try to appease the police.

Accused of a DUI? Your reputation (and wallet) is on the line

When a Tampa resident is arrested on the suspicion of drunk driving, there are a lot of things to consider in the coming days and weeks. First of all, the accused person wants to get out of jail -- so they have to deal with bail. Then they have to get their car back, followed by a court visit. Depending on what happens in court, a fine associated with the DUI could be paid. In the wake of the court appearance, the person will likely require DUI classes.

Mark J. O'Brien's cases have been featured in:
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“Mark, thank you for everything. I will forever be indebted to you. You have stood by me and believed in me when it was not the popular thing to do. You are an amazing advocate.” Adam Filthaut
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