Irvine attorney pleads guilty to embezzlement charges

An Irvine attorney was sentenced to one year in jail and restitution for embezzling more than $150,000 and defrauding his clients, authorities said.

Tuan Thanh Tran, 44, pleaded guilty Friday to 10 felony counts of embezzlement by a fiduciary of trust, according to the Orange County district attorney's office.

Prosecutors said that between May 2011 and February 2012, Tran represented five clients seeking compensation for damages they suffered in traffic accidents through civil lawsuits.

Representing his clients, Tran settled with the insurance companies without informing them, prosecutors said. Tran forged his clients' signatures on settlement forms and kept the money, according to the DA's office.

Because of complaints relating to this case and others, Tran lost his ability to practice law in California about a year ago, prosecutors said.

On Friday, Tran was sentenced to one year in jail, five years formal probation and ordered to pay restitution.

— Lauren Williams

Twitter: @lawilliams30

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