New Castle News

District Judges

January 31, 2013

Disbarred attorney sentenced to jail

NEW CASTLE — A disbarred attorney has been ordered to serve seven to 14 months in the Lawrence County jail.

Michael A. Frisk Jr., 35, of 608 Orchard Ave., Ellwood City, was sentenced Tuesday by Senior Judge Eugene E. Fike II on four theft-related cases. Frisk’s sentence included making restitution of almost $100,000, and three years probation. He is eligible for work release.

William Panella, court-appointed to represent Frisk, said his client has been ordered to report to the jail Friday morning. He said Frisk has completed a drug rehabilitation program voluntarily.

According to court records, Frisk was initially charged with 36 counts — 15 of forgery, 10 of receiving stolen property, seven of conspiracy and four of theft.

He is accused of stealing from or cheating clients out of money, including an $87,473 insurance payment to a person whose son had been killed in a fire.

Panella said in November Frisk had entered an open guilty plea that included 14 counts of forgery, two of receiving stolen property, one of criminal conspiracy and two of theft by failure to make required disposition of funds.

He also noted Frisk had surrendered his license to practice law. In July, he was disbarred by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania. At the time, the board did not release a report on the disbarment or explain the reason, other than to note Frisk had consented to the action.

Anthony J. Krastek, senior deputy attorney general, handled the prosecution.

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