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BREAKING NEWS: Barasch & McGarry Blows the Whistle on Corrupt VCF Lawyer Who Stole $1 Million

BREAKING NEWS: Barasch & McGarry Blows the Whistle on Corrupt VCF Lawyer Who Stole $1 Million from Disabled NYPD Officer – And, Recovers $400,000 for the Victim!

Disgraced Westchester attorney Gustavo L. Vila appeared in White Plains Federal Court yesterday to plead guilty to stealing a $1 million Victim Compensation Fund award from his former client, disabled NYPD officer and 9/11 first responder John Ferreyra. Vila is also a retired police officer, a position he used to gain Officer Ferreyra’s trust and ultimately to betray it. Ferreyra was diagnosed with a 9/11-related cancer in 2004, had a life-saving stem cell transplant in 2012, and is thankfully in remission today.

“We are honored to have been called by Officer Ferreyra, so we could justly expose this scam,” said the firm’s managing attorney Mike Barasch. “9/11 advocate John Feal, and several of Mr. Ferrayra’s fellow police officers suggested that he call me to inquire why his VCF payout had been delayed more than three years. Firm partner Bruce Kaye, a former Ass’t District Attorney, and I knew immediately that his attorney had stolen the funds. We reported the theft to the Victim Compensation Fund, which in turn triggered an investigation by the Dept. Of Justice. We also reported Mr. Vila to the U.S. Southern District Attorney’s office. The FBI then commenced its own investigation. Last month, Vila was arrested. Yesterday, he plead guilty. He faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in Federal prison.”

We are pleased to report that once Vila was arrested, we submitted a claim to the New York State Lawyers Fund for Client Protection on Mr. Ferreyra’s behalf. The Fund, whose mission is to protect legal consumers from dishonest lawyers, just awarded Mr. Ferreyra $400,000 as partial restitution. This is the maximum amount allowed under their charter.

We are honored to represent Mr. Ferreyra at no fee, and we will not rest until we recover the balance of Mr. Ferreyra’s VCF award.

[Read the full article from amNewYork]

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    That was awesome of you and your firm !!!! I truly respect your code of ethics and code of honor !!!! We need more honorable lawyers like you guys. Specially nowadays.

    Barasch McGarry has constantly shown honor and the highest respect for all its clients. The charity they have given says everything about the content of their character.

    Michael, As extremely disappointed I am by the Vila theft and the satisfaction I feel for Mr Ferreyra and his family I am so impressed and grateful by the relentless, aggressive and sincere dedication that you and the firm continue demonstrate. Thank you

    Thank God for you Michael and Mister McGarry, I always knew you would always be watching out for us

    Great work Mike, it’s comforting to know how diligent you and your law firm are.

    Nice work. It must be tough to turn in one of your own, but it shows your integrity and loyalty to first responders. Thank you

    Dear MIKE
    THANK YOU AND YOUR WHOLE FIRM FOR WHAT YOU GUYS ARE DOING FOR US FIRST RESPONDERS.
    YOU AND YOUR FIRM HAS HELPED ME GREATLY
    THANKS AGAIN JOHN BECK

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    There is still time to apply for significant compensation if you have been diagnosed with any of the 68 cancers that doctors at the WTC Health Program (WTCHP) have linked to the WTC toxic dust. The deadline to apply to the Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) is two years from the date that a cancer has been certified by the WTC Health Program — or any other governmental agency. The two-year period to register doesn’t start on the day of a cancer diagnosis. Rather, it starts only when a cancer survivor is made aware their cancer was linked to exposure to the WTC toxins.

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