New Orleans Attorney Pleads Guilty to Defrauding Athletes

February 24, 2012

A New Orleans attorney who represented professional athletes in their workers’ compensation claims has pleaded guilty to defrauding clients out of more than $462,000.

Sixty-seven-year-old Robert Hackett faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine following his guilty plea Wednesday to mail fraud.

Federal prosecutors say Hackett collected payments from insurers for his clients’ sports-related injuries and then deposited the money into his own bank account for his personal use.

A court filing says Hackett defrauded at least four athletes who suffered career-ending injuries. Their names aren’t disclosed, but two were professional hockey players and two were professional football players.

His sentencing is set for May 16.

Hackett’s attorney didn’t immediately return a call for comment.

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