California Lawyer Accused of Stealing Client’s Car Crash Injury Settlement

March 12, 2018

An attorney has been accused of stealing most of a multimillion-dollar settlement he reached for the victim of a California car accident.

Philip Layfield was indicted Friday for mail fraud and money laundering. He’s expected to be extradited to Los Angeles. It’s unclear whether he has a lawyer.

According to the State Bar of California website he is no longer eligible to practice law. In response to disciplinary charges filed against him, he blames the finance department and others within the defunct firm of Layfield & Barrett for the various charges he faces.

Layfield was arrested last week in New Jersey after returning to the U.S. from his new home in Costa Rica.

Layfield, whose firm had offices in Southern California, negotiated a $3.9 million settlement two years ago for a man who’d been struck by a car in Orange County.

Federal prosecutors contend that Layfield took about $2 million for himself and the client got only $25,000.

If he’s convicted, Layfield could face up to 60 years in prison.

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