I-Team: Lawyer testifies against former client - News, Weather and Classifieds for Southern New England

I-Team: Lawyer testifies against former client

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A Cranston philanthropist who last fall pleaded guilty to defrauding terminally ill patients to make millions for himself and investors, had the tables turned on him Monday in U.S. District Court.

Joseph Caramadre wants to withdraw his guilty plea. He claims his lawyers for his trial last fall gave him bad advice, convincing him to plead guilty when he was actually innocent.

In court Monday, one of Caramadre's former lawyers Michael Lepizzara, painted a less than flattering picture of his former client.

Lepizzara called Caramadre an "overwhelming client," who was obsessed with criticizing the way the government conducted it's years-long investigation into Caramadre and one of his business associates.

Lepizzara said, "Caramadre told me I'm the smartest man in the room and I know everything."

Caramadre, a lawyer and investment adviser, stole the identities of terminally ill patients. He got their loved ones to agree to letting Caramadre use the terminally ill patient's names on annuities that contained death benefits. Caramadre and his investors were made the beneficiaries. When the terminally ill patients died, the investors made millions, according to the government.

Lepizzara said while he and another attorney tried to get Caramadre to focus on helping to prepare his defense,  Caramadre wanted to pursue a malicious prosecution claim against the government.

The change of plea hearing is being held before U.S. District Court Judge Willam Smith.

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    Katie Davis

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    Katie Davis is an I-Team reporter at NBC 10. She joined the team in January 2010 and is excited to live and work in New England.
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    Parker Gavigan is an Associated Press award-winning journalist, and was named to the NBC 10 I-Team in January 2013. Parker digs deeper to get the answers that matter to you.
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