New York targets company alleging to be prisoner assistance center

By Mark Iandolo | May 9, 2017

ALBANY, N.Y. (Legal Newsline) — New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman announced May 2 that he has filed a lawsuit against NYSPAC Inc., operating as the NYS Prisoner Assistance Center or NY Parole Aids, and its owner, Mario Vredenburg, also known as Antonia Barrone.

According to Schneiderman’s office, the defendants bilked numerous New York consumers out of thousands of dollars. The defendants would allegedly say to inmates that that they would handle administrative parole appeals and other legal matters that they are actually unqualified, and unlicensed, to perform. Vredenburg, a convicted felon who himself spent time in state prison, purportedly operated the business from home and duped consumers into thinking he was an attorney.

“Practicing law without a license can have devastating consequences on victims seeking legitimate legal advice and representation,” Schneiderman said. “Those who impair the legal rights of New Yorkers by holding themselves out as licensed attorneys will be held accountable.”

Handling the case for New York are assistant attorneys general Emily Auletta and Amy Schallop, deputy bureau chief Laura J. Levine and bureau chief Jane M. Azia, all of the Consumer Frauds and Protection Bureau, and executive deputy attorney general for economic justice Manisha Sheth. Investigator Mark Rudd of the Investigations Bureau also assisted.

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