Accused fraud artist Peter Frommer hires Denver law firm
ASPEN It appears that alleged check-fraud artist Peter Frommer plans to switch from the free services of a public defender to a top-shelf Denver law firm, thanks to $20,000 provided by his father. Frommer faces felony fraud charges connected to a string of bad checks he allegedly wrote to a handful of Aspen retailers, real estate agents, banks and baby sitters during the winter of 2006-07. He also faces a handful of high-dollar judgments in lawsuits over allegations that he conned investors out of millions in his native California.Frommer claimed his recent losses left him indigent, causing him to file for assistance from the public defenders office for his criminal defense in Aspen.Public defender Garth McCarty represented Frommer in pretrial and motions hearings, but on Friday, McCarty asked the court to withdraw from the case, claiming Frommer recently had obtained sources of income and was no longer indigent.As proof of Frommers intention to hire an attorney, McCarty filed court documents showing a photocopy of a $20,000 cashiers check written by Frommers father, Otto, to the high-dollar law firm of Haddon, Morgan, Mueller, Jordan, Mackey & Foreman P.C.Calls to the firm were not returned. And as of Friday afternoon, no one at the law firm had filed an entry of appearance on behalf of Frommer.Frommer said contributions from his father allowed him to hire a Denver firm.Im always made to look like the bad guy for taking all of these peoples money, Frommer said Friday. But it happened to our family as well. In one day, we lost everything.Frommer said he has paid back nearly everyone to whom he owes money in Aspen. Some of the debts, however, are in dispute, he said. He added that all civil claims against him in California are on hold because his wife is in bankruptcy.Frommer, who said hes living in a rented condominium in Aspen on contributions from his father, said his financial trouble and the losses of his many investors in California arose because he over-leveraged himself in high-dollar real estate deals in Malibu.Frommer then landed in Aspen, leaving behind an army of angry investors in California. Frommer said the investors are upset over deals that simply went bad. He said he hopes to get the criminal matters behind him and work locally and on international information-technology projects.In a recent hearing, Deputy District Attorney Gail Nichols brought five California alleged victims of Frommers to the stand. She hopes to enter their testimony as evidence in the criminal case in Aspen.Nichols alleged that Frommer has only paid back a handful of the Aspen retailers he allegedly cheated and that he faces more than 30 criminal counts, including investment fraud and theft in a series.Because of Frommers attorney troubles, Judge James Boyd recently postponed a trial scheduled to begin Tuesday. Instead, Frommer will be in court for a pretrial conference to show proof of counsel.McCarty will appear at the hearing by phone.Judge Boyd will decide in coming months whether Frommers California court record is admissible, and the case could go to trial in upcoming email@example.com
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