An 81-year-old Orangeburg man has been convicted in Rockland County Court in New City of stealing more than $100,000 from law clients he represented in the sale of a vacant parcel in Piermont.
Barnett R. Rogers of 32 Henry St., Orangeburg, has been ordered held in the Rockland County Correctional Facility in New City on $100,000 bail pending his sentencing in June. Rockland County District Attorney Thomas P. Zugibe said Rogers faces up to 15 years in prison for his conviction on the charge of second-degree grand larceny.
Rogers was convicted after a month-long trial before County Court Judge William Nelson. Rogers asked to be tried by a judge instead of having a jury decide his fate in court.
Zugibe said Rogers, who was an attorney, represented a couple from Queens in a number of matters leading up to the sale of the Piermont property. After the land closing, Rogers took money from an escrow account in the guise of legal fees rather than turning over the proceeds of the sale to his clients, both in their 70s.
The victims complained about Rogers to the Rockland County District Attorney’s Office and the Grievance Committee of the Ninth Judicial District, which handles disciplinary matters involving attorneys. Rogers resigned from the practice of law as a result of the complaint to the Grievance Committee.
Rogers was investigated and prosecuted by the Rockland County District Attorney’s Special Investigations Unit. Rogers was indicted in August 2010 by a Rockland County grand jury.