The Office of Lawyers Professional Responsibility is seeking the disbarment of one attorney and the suspension of another.
Director Martin Cole asked the Minnesota Supreme Court to disbar Fargo attorney Rebecca Lee Lawler. Lawler, who was licensed to practice law in both Minnesota and North Dakota, already has been disbarred in North Dakota. Lawler was accused of stealing from her clients and her father in order to fuel a meth and crack cocaine habit.
Cole also requested the suspension of Frank Arend Schulte, a St. Paul attorney.
The suspension request is based on Cole’s assertion that Schulte did not cooperate with a request for information regarding Schulte’s overdrawn trust account and the ensuing investigation. Cole also accused Schulte of not maintaining the required trust account books and records.
Schulte’s previous discipline includes being placed on private probation in 2005 for “yelling at a client in a courthouse building, disclosing confidential client information, failing to return client property, and failing to cooperate with a disciplinary investigation,” according to the discipline petition. In 2010, he was admonished for not “diligently” pursuing a client’s case, failing to serve an opposing party properly, failing to communicate with a client and failing to give the client’s file to new counsel in a timely manner. Also in 2010, he was admonished for not attending court, not telling a client that he wasn’t going to be there and for not holding a client’s property safely.
Both Schulte and Cole have 20 days from the date of their petitions to respond to the allegations made by Cole.