BEFORE THE HEARING BOARD
OF THE
ILLINOIS ATTORNEY REGISTRATION
AND
DISCIPLINARY COMMISSION

In the Matter of:

DUMITRY RAZVAN ANCUTA,

Attorney-Respondent, 

No.  6288767.

 

Commission No.   2011PR00092

FILED -  July 29, 2011

COMPLAINT

Jerome Larkin, Administrator of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission, by his attorney, Marita C. Sullivan, pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 753, complains of Respondent, Dumitry Razvan Ancuta, who was licensed to practice law in Illinois on May 23, 2006, and alleges that Respondent has engaged in the following conduct which tends to defeat the administration of justice or which brings the courts or the legal profession into disrepute:

COUNT I
(Failure to disclose civil complaint alleging fraud to the Illinois Board of Admissions to the Bar)

1. On May 18, 2003, Respondent submitted a Character and Fitness Registration Application ("application") to the Illinois Board of Admissions to the Bar ("IBAB") in connection with his application for admission to the Illinois Bar as a law student applicant.

2. In July 2003, Respondent took the Illinois bar examination and passed.

3. Respondent's application was referred to the Committee on Character and Fitness of the First Judicial District due to Respondent's on-going credit problems, including unpaid medical bills, overdue credit card accounts, and a collection lawsuit filed against him; Respondent's 1999 criminal arrest for patronizing a prostitute; Respondent's non-disclosure to the two law schools he attended of his criminal arrest, even though both law school applications asked whether Respondent had ever been arrested; and a significant number of traffic offenses, including many traffic citations issued while he was attending law school.

4. In June 2004, because Respondent's application remained pending, IBAB required Respondent to complete an Additional Character and Fitness Questionnaire ("additional questionnaire") to provide current personal and employment information, and update his character and fitness information, to the Committee on Character and Fitness. On June 28, 2004, Respondent submitted the additional questionnaire to IBAB.

5. At all times alleged in this complaint, Supreme Court Rule 708(c) provided:

(c) At all times prior to his or her admission to the bar of this state, each law student registrant and applicant is under a continuing duty to update and continue to report fully and completely to the Board of Admissions to the Bar and to the Committee on Character and Fitness all information required to be disclosed pursuant to any and all application documents and such further inquiries prescribed by the Board and the Committee.

6. Question number 19A on both the May 18, 2003 application and the June 28, 2004 additional questionnaire asked Respondent the following: "[h]ave you had a complaint filed against you in any civil or administrative forum alleging fraud, deceit, misrepresentation, forgery, discrimination or professional malpractice?" In the application and additional questionnaire, Respondent also signed an agreement to fully and frankly answer all questions and he agreed that he understood the following statement:

Do you understand that the execution of this document constitutes a representation that you will immediately disclose to the Board of Admissions to the Bar and the Character and Fitness Committee circumstances and events occurring after the date of submission of this document which may bear on your character and fitness?

7. On September 27, 2004, Emil Ciortuz filed a lawsuit against Respondent in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois. The Clerk of the Court docketed the matter as Emil Ciortuz v. Dumitry Ancuta, Auna Ancuta, and Stelian Ancuta, 04 CH 15827. In the lawsuit, Ciortuz alleged that in 2002 he entered into an agreement with Respondent to invest $74,814.29 in foreclosed condominiums and tendered that amount to Respondent, but that Respondent engaged in fraud and conversion and invested the money for his own benefit.

8. On or about November 18, 2004, Respondent and Ciortuz settled case number 04 CH 15827 in the amount of $50,000. On or about November 19, 2004, the Honorable Martin S. Agran entered an agreed order of dismissal in case number 04 CH 15827. In the dismissal order, the parties stipulated that they executed a written settlement agreement providing for the payment of certain sums by Respondent to Ciortuz.

9. At the time Ciortuz filed a civil complaint against Respondent alleging fraud, Respondent knew that he was under a duty to update his application and disclose the filing of case number 04 CH 15827 to IBAB.

10. At no time did Respondent disclose to IBAB the 2004 civil complaint filed against him alleging fraud.

11. In or about April 2005, the three-member Inquiry Panel of the Committee on Character and Fitness of the First Judicial District voted not to certify Respondent for admission to the Illinois Bar based on a deficiency in truthfulness, trustworthiness, and reliability, and concerns about his candor to the Committee during the investigation. In or about May 2005, the full Committee endorsed that recommendation, and declined to certify Respondent's application for admission.

12. On December 13, 2005, at Respondent's request, the Committee on Character and Fitness of the First Judicial District held a hearing on Respondent's application for admission. At the conclusion of the hearing, the Committee voted to certify Respondent's application for admission.

13. At the time the Committee voted to certify Respondent's application for admission in December 2005, Respondent knew that the 2004 civil complaint alleging fraud was material to the Committee's consideration of his application.

14. On May 23, 2006, Respondent was admitted to practice law in Illinois.

15. By reason of the conduct described above, Respondent has engaged in the following misconduct:

in connection with an application for admission to the bar, failure to disclose a fact necessary to correct a material misapprehension known by that person to have arisen in the matter, in violation of Rule 8.1(a)(2) of the Illinois Rules of Professional Conduct (1990);

conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation, in violation of Rule 8.4(a)(4) of the Illinois Rules of Professional Conduct (1990);

conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice, in violation of Rule 8.4(a)(5) of the Illinois Rules of Professional Conduct (1990);

as a law student registrant, failure to update and report fully and completely all information required to be disclosed to the Board of Admissions to the Bar and the Committee on Character and Fitness, in violation of Supreme Court Rule 708(c); and

conduct which tends to defeat the administration of justice or bring the courts or legal profession into disrepute, in violation of Supreme Rule 770.

COUNT II
(Failure to Respond to a Lawful Demand for Information)

16. In or about January 2010, the Administrator received information alleging that Respondent had engaged in mortgage fraud and initiated investigation number 2010IN00116 to investigate that allegation. During the course of investigating 2010IN00116, the attention of the Administrator was directed to the case captioned Emil Ciortuz v. Dumitry Ancuta, Auna Ancuta, and Stelian Ancuta, 04 CH 15827, in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois.

17. On November 9, 2010, Counsel for the Administrator sent a letter to Respondent requesting that he provide the Administrator with information and documents relating to Emil Ciortuz v. Dumitry Ancuta, et al., 04 CH 15827, in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois. In addition, in her November 9th correspondence, counsel for the Administrator asked Respondent to address the Administrator's concerns as to whether he disclosed the existence of case number 04 CH 15827 to IBAB. Respondent received the letter shortly after it was sent.

18. Respondent never provided any response to the November 9, 2010 letter from counsel for the Administrator.

19. On December 10, 2010, counsel for the Administrator sent a letter to Respondent again requesting that Respondent provide the Administrator with information relating to investigation number 2010IN0011. Respondent received the letter shortly after it was sent.

20. Respondent never provided any response to the December 10, 2010 letter from counsel for the Administrator.

21. On January 13, 2011, the Administrator sent a subpoena duces tecum by certified mail to Respondent at Respondent's home address. The subpoena duces tecum commanded Respondent's appearance on February 9, 2011 at 10:00 a.m. at the Chicago offices of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission ("ARDC") and the production of certain documents at that time. The U.S. Postal Service notified Respondent of the certified letter, but Respondent never claimed it. On March 3, 2011, the subpoena duces tecum was returned to the Administrator by the U.S. Postal Service with the notation "unclaimed."

22. On February 28, March 2, March 4, and March 8, 2011, Commission Investigator James Easoz ("Easoz") attempted to personally serve Respondent at Respondent's home address with a subpoena duces tecum commanding Respondent's appearance at the ARDC on March 18, 2011. On each occasion, Easoz went to the condominium building where Respondent resided, and the doorman at the condominium building called Respondent's condominium unit but Respondent did not answer the call. On each occasion, Easoz left a business card with the doorman of Respondent's condominium building, and on each occasion the doorman agreed to place the business card in Respondent's mailbox. On each occasion, the doorman placed the business card in Respondent's mailbox.

23. On March 8, 2011, Easoz obtained Respondent's current phone number from the doorman at the condominium building where Respondent resided. On March 9, March 11, and March 14, 2011, Easoz attempted to reach Respondent by telephone at his current phone number. On each occasion Easoz phoned Respondent, he did not answer the call, and Easoz left a voicemail message requesting that Respondent contact him. Respondent received each of the voicemail messages that Easoz left for him, but at no time did Respondent return Easoz' calls.

24. On March 15, 2011, Easoz returned to Respondent's home address to again attempt to personally serve Respondent with a subpoena duces tecum commanding Respondent's appearance at the ARDC. On that date, the doorman gave Easoz an envelope from Respondent containing one of the business cards Easoz previously left for Respondent, with the hand-written note "I don't want" scrawled across the front of the envelope and signed "Ancuta", and Respondent's condominium number underneath his name. Easoz returned the envelope to the doorman, and told the doorman to give the envelope back to Respondent, as it was important that Respondent contact the ARDC.

25. On March 16, 2011, the Administrator sent a subpoena duces tecum by certified and regular mail to Respondent at Respondent's home address. The subpoena duces tecum commanded Respondent's appearance on April 7, 2011 at 10:00 a.m. at the Chicago offices of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission and the production of certain documents at that time. The U.S. Postal Service notified Respondent of the certified letter, but Respondent never claimed it. On April 11, 2011, the subpoena duces tecum which had been sent by certified mail was returned to the Administrator by the U.S. Postal Service with the notation "unclaimed." Respondent received the subpoena duces tecum sent to Respondent by regular mail.

26. As of July 6, 2011, the date the Inquiry Board voted to file this complaint against Respondent, Respondent had not produced the information or documents requested in the Administrator's letters or subpoena duces tecum, nor had he appeared to provide testimony in response to the subpoena duces tecum. Counsel for the Administrator never waived or excused Respondent's production of information and documents, or his appearance at the Chicago offices of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission.

27. By reason of the conduct outlined above, Respondent has engaged in the following misconduct:

  1. failure to respond to a lawful demand for information from the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission in violation of Rule 8.1(a)(2) of the Illinois Rules of Professional Conduct;

  2. conduct that is prejudicial to the administration of justice in violation of Rule 8.4(a)(5) of the Illinois Rules of Professional Conduct; and

  3. conduct which tends to defeat the administration of justice or to bring the courts or the legal profession into disrepute in violation of Supreme Court Rule 770.

WHEREFORE, the Administrator respectfully requests that this matter be assigned to a panel of the Hearing Board, that a hearing be held pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 753, and that the panel make findings of fact, conclusions of fact and law, and a recommendation for such discipline as is warranted.

Marita C. Sullivan
Counsel for the Administrator
One Prudential Plaza
130 East Randolph Drive, Suite 1500
Chicago, Illinois 60601-6219
Telephone: (312) 565-2600
Respectfully submitted,

Jerome Larkin, Administrator
Attorney Registration and
Disciplinary Commission

By:   Marita C. Sullivan