- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 16, 2014

MIAMI (AP) - Authorities are searching for a 44-year-old convicted child abuser now accused of posing as an attorney to con a convict’s family out of $70,000.

The Miami Herald (https://hrld.us/1jJX589 ) reports Imer Armando Perez vanished this week as state agents sought to arrest him on charges of grand theft and practicing law without a license.

Perez is on probation after serving two years for aggravated child abuse. The Herald reports he apparently honed his skills as a “jailhouse lawyer” by doing legal research in jail.

Relatives of Scotty Posada hired Perez in January through an uncle. A few days later, he told them he had spoken to prosecutors and they had agreed to vacate Posada’s 27-year sentence for a 1999 kidnapping. The Posada’s brother and mother paid Perez $70,000. Perez said Posado would be released in 90 days.

The retainer contract signed by Posada’s mother featured the logo for “The Law Offices of Armando A. Perez” for an office near the Miami courthouse. He claimed his law partners were Robert Lamons and Francisco Marty. They are real-life attorneys who actually represented Perez in 2007 on a sexual battery case.

The family eventually suspected Perez was a fraud. He searched Perez online and found a Miami lawyer with the same name, but told authorities the man “appeared to be much older.”

The brother confronted Perez who insisted “that computers are not real.” He later sought out Lamons to explain what was happening.

Lamons called his former client to see what was going on. According to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Perez told him he was working undercover for the FBI. Lamons then called the FBI and was told there was no such probe.

The FDLE agents said Perez also offered his services to another man facing criminal charges, but the man sensed he was a fraud and didn’t sign the paperwork.

Miami-Dade State Attorney’s spokesman Ed Griffith says there may be more victims and he urges them to contact authorities.

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Information from: The Miami Herald, https://www.herald.com

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