Fraudster Giovanni di Stefano, 57, of Canterbury, was known as the “devil’s advocate” for representing high-profile criminals including train robber Ronnie Biggs and Saddam Hussein’s legal team, reports the BBC.
The judge said: “There is more than one kind of predator. Some predators hunt down their victims, others lie in wait for them. Your victims in this case were all desperate people and people who, because of their desperation, were vulnerable. You had no regard for them nor for their anguish. Your only concern was to line your own pockets.”
Among the crimes Di Stefano pleaded guilty to was stealing £150,000 compensation that should have gone to man who had lost an arm in a car crash.
He had presented himself as a lawyer, despite having no legal qualifications. Despite not being registered to work as an advocate in the UK or Italy,he used the Italian word “avvocato” on documents to give the impression he was legit.
A jury of eight women and four men took four hours and 10 minutes to reach a verdict.
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