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MOVERS & SHAKERS

The snakes and ladders of society A chronicle of drama, scandal and success in London, Paris, New York and elsewhere

The truth’s stranger than fiction

The “Devil’s Advocate” is jailed for 14 years

 

Bogus lawyer Giovanni di Stefano was jailed for 14 years yesterday after being found guilty of nine counts of obtaining a money transfer by deception, eight counts of fraud, three counts of acquiring criminal property, two counts of using a false instrument, one count of attempting to obtain a money transfer by deception, one count of obtaining property by deception and one count of using criminal property.

 

Giovanni di Stefano
Giovanni di Stefano

A “planned and persistent” offender, di Stefano came to public attention when he represented and was involved with such people as convicted paedophile Jonathan King, serial killer Dr Harold Shipman and timeshare fraudster John ‘Goldfinger’ Palmer. Despite having no legal training, he managed to overturn the manslaughter conviction of the controversial property tycoon Nicholas van Hoogstraten in 2002 and got him released from prison and also boasted of his associations with killers such as Jeremy Bamber, Kenneth Noye and Linda Calvey.

 

Di Stefano’s victims, though, were not amongst this number. Instead, they were people in dire straits such as a disabled man seeking damages for the loss of his arm. Of di Stefano, Judge Alistair McCreath, the Recorder of Westminster, stated:

 

“Your victims in this case were all desperate people and people who, because of their desperation, were vulnerable… It is also about something different and great – it is about the real distress you caused to so many people… You had no regard for them nor for their anguish… Your only concern was to line your own pockets”.

 

They often say: “It’s the nice guy who comes last”. In the case of Mr di Stefano, thankfully for once this has been proved untrue. His sentence is well and truly deserved.

 

Comments

4 comments on “The truth’s stranger than fiction”

  1. Mr di Stefano is well known in the Canterbury area, he is known to have raised huge amounts of money for good causes, his heart must be in the right place. We should be more forgiving. Fred (the shred) Goodwin was knighted for services to the banking industry, he had no banking experience either.

    1. Er…with regards to him having raised what you say are huge amounts of money for good causes … I have just two words for you – Jimmy Savile.

  2. Quote: “His heart must be in the right place.” You could not be more wrong! I personally will never forgive him for the stress and suffering he inflicted on my friend Tricia Walsh-Smith. And the endless horrific tales of lies, theft and misery I heard in court only served to underscore the feelings I have towards this odious career criminal.

  3. My point was that unscrupulous con-men and those who groom their victims, hide behind the shield of charity fundraising, of course, he is a douchebag. It was a sarcastic Quote.

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