• Orlando attorney accused of stealing from clients ordered to pay $141,000 in restitution


    The Supreme Court has barred an Orlando attorney accused of padding his pockets with more than $100,000 in stolen money that was intended for his clients from being a lawyer in Florida.

    The law office of Ramon Melendez sits empty on East Robison Street after Melendez allegedly took off with no warning.

    His clients told Channel 9 in November the office looked and worked as any other in the area, but they soon learned he took off with their money.

    In November, Melendez was suspended from practicing law. He was arrested a short time later and has since been banned from being a lawyer in the state.

    "Because he stole clients' funds, it doesn't get much worse than that," said WFTV legal analyst Bill Sheaffer. "That's a breach of the public's confidence. The Florida Bar will not tolerate that."

    The Supreme Court also ordered Melendez to pay back the $141,000 to his clients.

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