The U.S. Attorney for Oregon today unsealed a federal indictment of Portland lawyer Lori Deveny. Prosecutors charged Deveny with six counts of mail fraud, six counts of wire fraud, two counts of aggravated identify theft and bank fraud, two counts of engaging in monetary transactions with criminally derived property, two counts of filing a false tax return and five counts of failing to file a tax return.
Deveny pleaded not guilty to all charges.
WW first reported in January on allegations that Deveny had stolen hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal settlements awarded to her clients. Those clients included many people who had suffered traumatic brain injuries—Deveny represented these vulnerable people in personal-injury cases, then allegedly pocketed their cash.
U.S. Magistrate Judge John Acosta set a preliminary trial date of July 22. Deveny was released under her own recognizance. However, Assistant U.S. Attorney Claire Fay asked for a number of conditions: Deveny may have no contact with any former clients; Deveny must turn over all files, including electronic versions, from her law practice to the Oregon State Bar; she cannot leave the state of Oregon; and she cannot open any new financial accounts of any kind.
Fay also requested two unusual conditions. She noted that when federal agents arrested Deveny this morning, there were at least a dozen guns and numerous taxidermied animal heads—including a giraffe, zebra and lions—in her home. Fay requested that Deveny not be allowed to sell any of the guns or trophies. Judge Acosta declined to grant that request.
He ordered Deveny to turn over all ammunition to the court, but will allow her to sell her guns and trophies.