Ex-attorney accused in trust fund theft wanted in Tenn.
A former Westmoreland County attorney accused of taking money from a trust fund belonging to an 18-year-old is wanted by authorities in Tennessee on an unrelated theft charge.
Defense attorney Dante Bertani said he plans to fight extradition for J. Russell McGregor Jr., 52, of Laughlintown.
“We don't think they have any basis to take him back,” Bertani said on Friday. “They have to at least tell us what he's charged with.”
McGregor was arrested in mid-July on multiple counts of theft and receiving stolen property for allegedly taking money from the trust account that was set up after the Greensburg teen's mother died in a vehicle accident in January 2012, according to police.
McGregor was appointed by the court to act as a trustee for the funds, police said. County detectives allege that McGregor took $120,000 from the fund for his personal use between March 2012 and January 2013.
He is being held in the Westmoreland County Prison on $75,000 bail.
Late last month, after receiving information from Tennessee authorities, County Detective Thomas Horan filed a new complaint indicating that investigators in that state wanted to extradite McGregor. Horan said McGregor allegedly stole or did not pay for a moving company vehicle there earlier this year.
After a hearing Friday, Judge Al Bell ruled McGregor's $100,000 bail in the Tennessee case be reduced to a recognizance bond.
McGregor is listed as retired by The Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania. The online record does not indicate when he retired from his Ligonier law practice.
A new date has not been set for a preliminary hearing on the Westmoreland County theft case. The hearing had been scheduled for Friday.
An extradition hearing has not been rescheduled. Bell granted a continuance on Thursday for 60 days to permit Bertani to file motions, according to a court order.
Renatta Signorini is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-837-5374 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Endowment of $3.49B makes University of Pittsburgh 25th richest in U.S.
- Rostraver Democrat aims for 1 of 3 open spots on Westmoreland County bench
- Westmoreland County settles with fired public defender
- Braddock man held for trial in Jeannette assault, robbery
- Krieger to seek Westmoreland County Common Pleas judgeship
- Suspect in West Newton burglary sought, alleged accomplice arrested
- Three injured in two-vehicle accident on Arona Road in Hempfield
- Woman pays $178 fine for Westmoreland courthouse conduct
- New Alexandria tree trimmer pleads guilty to fraud
- Penn Township District Judge Kistler plans bid for 3rd term on bench
- Walker: Still time to recycle live Christmas trees in Scottdale