Attorney convicted in connection with Rothstein Ponzi scheme
Updated On: Feb 12 2014 02:24:47 PM EST
A 38-year-old attorney was convicted Tuesday by a federal jury in West Palm Beach in connection with the Rothstein Ponzi scheme, authorities say.
Christina M. Kitterman, of Deerfield Beach, has been convicted on three counts of wire fraud after a week-long trial. U.S. attorneys said a sentencing date has not been set.
The Ponzi scheme involved the sale of purported confidential settlement agreements in sexual harassment and/or whistleblower cases, which authorities said were purportedly handled by attorneys at the former Fort Lauderdale law firm of Rothstein, Rosenfeldt and Adler, P.A.
"The verdict rendered by the jury today is another step toward bringing Rothstein's criminal associates to justice," said U.S. attorney Wifredo A. Ferrer. "As I have previously stated, the success of Rothstein's complex scheme to deceive and defraud depended on the complicity of individuals like Christina Kitterman. Kitterman, an attorney, was the 15th individual to face criminal charges in connection with this complex financial fraud."
Evidence introduced at trial established that during the course of the Ponzi scheme and while she was employed as an attorney at RRA, Kitterman falsely posed as the head of the Fort Lauderdale office of the Florida Bar Association during a meeting with certain investors. Authorities said this was done in order to explain to the investors the reason why certain payments due to them had not been made.
"The jury has validated the government's case sending a strong message that those who knowingly assist in perpetrating investment scams will be held accountable for their actions," said Jose A. Gonzalez, IRS-CI special agent in charge. "Together with our law enforcement partners, we will continue to aggressively investigate and bring to justice those who aided Rothstein in perpetrating this massive fraud."
"Although Scott Rothstein was the ringleader in a massive Ponzi scheme, he needed help. A jury of her peers has determined Christina Kitterman gave him that help and needs to be held accountable," said Michael B. Steinbach, Special Agent in Charge, FBI Miami. "Regardless of one's role, the FBI and its partners are committed to investigate those who swindle investors."
At sentencing, Kitterman faces up to 20 years in prison and a fine of $250,000, authorities said.