Fake attorney from Glendale targeted inmates and families in fraud scheme, stealing their money and hope

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A Glendale man made false promises to inmates and their families that he would have their wrongful convictions overturned in order to steal money from them, prosecutors announced on Tuesday.

Kenneth Moore, 53, allegedly presented himself as a licensed attorney and founded a company, Waymore Post-Conviction LLC, that reached out to convicted persons serving long prison sentences for murder, manslaughter and other serious crimes, and their families.

According to Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez, between April 1, 2012, and Aug. 31, 2016, Moore allegedly promised to provide services that would ultimately lead the courts to overturn the convictions. After receiving upfront payments of between $5,000 and $15,000 from each family, however, he allegedly did not file motions (as he had promised) to set aside verdicts on behalf of the inmates.

The investigation found that Moore filed only two actual motions in court — and allegedly used the forged signature of an actual attorney to do so.

“This case is especially reprehensible to me because in Brooklyn, we have a robust Conviction Review Unit that takes wrongful conviction claims seriously,” Gonzalez said in a March 13 statement. “This defendant allegedly took advantage of that exemplary work by targeting vulnerable victims and exploiting the hope of inmates and their families that they might be released from custody.”

Prosecutors said that Moore allegedly targeted inmates at prisons in New York as well as Kansas, North Carolina and Virginia, among other states. He set up a website and a Facebook page for Waymore Post-Conviction LLC, where visitors learned more about the services that the firm claimed it could provide.

In one instance, Gonzalez said, Moore was able to convince one inmate and his family to take on his wrongful conviction case instead of an out-of-state law firm affiliated with The Innocence Project, a nonprofit dedicated to exonerating wrongfully convicted people.

Waymore Post-Conviction maintained offices in Bushwick and Garden City. The company’s Yelp page contained several reviews from customers — all of which were bad.

“This is a SCAM,” wrote Katrina M. of Garland, TX, in August of 2016. “Do not give this man or ‘business’ any money. Kenneth Moore pretends to be a lawyer that specializes in post conviction but he is not even licensed to practice law. He took over $6k from my family and I in hopes of getting a loved one released. All of the people who seem to be a part of this SCAM are made up names/people.”

“I had retained Kenneth Moore with Waymore Post-Convictions and made about 6 payments and I have not met this man in person,” wrote Shanelle R. of Highland, NY in June of 2016.  “When I confronted him about showing up to his office and they said he not there anymore, I lost contact with him… I was venerable [sic] and under a lot of stress at the time…. Please don’t be a victim of fraud.”

Moore was arraigned on March 13 on a 75-count indictment that includes charges of third- and fourth-degree grand larceny, attempted grand larceny, scheme to defraud, unauthorized practice of a profession, criminal possession of a forged instrument, forgery, offering a false instrument for filing and criminal mischief. He was ordered held on $300,000 bond or $150,000 cash, and is due back in court on May 16. If convicted of the top grand larceny charge, he could serve up to seven years behind bars.

Gonzalez asked that anyone who believes they were victims of the alleged scam to call the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office at 718-250-2600.

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