HOUSTON, TX – Who doesn’t love a good crime drama? This time, the drama is playing out in a Houston courtroom.
Disgraced faux-attorney Anthony Chiofalo showed up after seven months on the run. He’s answering to some pretty major charges. Chiofalo, a disbarred New York attorney, is accused of starting up a fake law firm, Maio and Cardenas, in Houston and swindling over $9 million from Tadano American Corporation.
Why the sudden surrender? Get this: Chiofalo’s defense attorney had the audacity to tie in the Sandy Hook shootings.
“You know, Rhode Island is right next to Connecticut. The shootings happened there and he was living in a garage apartment. There was a young child in the neighborhood, a number of young children, and he felt like if he were to be found, SWAT would come in and there’s no need to terrify anyone else,” said Paul Doyle, Chiofalo’s defense attorney.
The prosecution isn’t buying it.
“We were close. We had an idea where he was. And you know, that might have been part of the decision in surrendering,’ said Martina Longoria, prosecutor.
Chiofalo’s wife, Susan, is in the hot seat, too. She’s been charged with felony theft but lawyers say she’s being compliant.
Chiofalo was denied bail. No surprise there. Next up, the case will be presented to a Harris County Grand Jury most likely in February. Looks like the wheels of justice can finally start turning.