Published: Thursday, November 30, 2017 @ 5:14 PM
By: Nancy Bowman - Contributing Writer
Former Troy lawyer Christopher Bucio was suspended indefinitely from the practice of law Nov. 29 by the Ohio Supreme Court.
A court Board of Professional Conduct recommended the suspension earlier this year.
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Bucio, 39, whose address now is listed as Urbana, was convicted in November 2016 of unauthorized use of property involving land obtained for fees from a Shelby County client. He was sentenced in January in Shelby County Common Pleas Court to five years of community control and a $5,000 fine.
He was accused of taking 22 acres of farm land from the woman in payment for legal representation in 2010, selling the land and keeping the proceeds.
The woman was paid $97,767 restitution by Bucio as part of a settlement agreement just before his sentencing. Court documents disclosed that amount along with Bucio’s acknowledgement he earned $9,000 from representing the woman.
Bucio’s license was suspended on an interim basis following the sentencing.
The board of conduct and the court found Bucio had engaged in misconduct by misappropriating the client’s funds. The court’s decision states that although the “presumptive sanction” would be disbarment, an indefinite suspension was recommended by the board of conduct and accepted by the court due to mitigating factors.
Those factors were: Bucio’s lack of prior discipline, imposition of other penalties for his actions, paying restitution and acknowledging, “albeit belatedly” that his actions were wrong, the court wrote in its decision. The decision was unanimous.
Bucio will be barred from petitioning for reinstatement to practice law until he completes successfully or is released from the community control ordered in the Shelby County case.
Efforts by this news organization to reach Bucio for comment were unsuccessful.