► Attorney Lee Castignetti, Jr. of New Bedford, MA; ethical leprechaun Print E-mail
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Attorney Lee Castignetti, Jr. of New Bedford, MA; ethical leprechaun

 
The Massachusetts Supreme Court presented Lee Castignetti, Jr. with a law license in 1977.
 
The Board of Bar Overseers found Lee guilty of the following misconduct.
 
Vantage Development Corp. agreed to build a home in Medfield, Massachusetts for buyers who agreed to pay it $300,000 in accordance with a schedule of payments attached to the construction agreement. Vantage was to use the buyers’ funds to pay for labor and materials to construct the home.
 
Lee was the secretary and treasurer of Vantage. Over the course of 4 months, the buyers gave Lee a total of $31,000 in checks payable to Vantage. Lee endorsed the checks to himself as “attorney for Vantage Development Corporation” and deposited the checks into an account at BankBoston captioned “Lee Castignetti, Jr. Client Funds Account Vantage Development Corp.” The BankBoston account was Vantage’s construction working account, and Lee was the sole signatory on the account.
 
Four months later, a dispute arose between the buyers and Vantage. A lawyer for the buyers sent a letter to vantage and Lee alleging that Vantage had breached its contract by walking off the job without completing construction of the house and for misrepresenting its expertise in home construction. The buyers claimed damages of at least $125,000. Lee then wrote to the buyers’ lawyer denying the claims regarding Vantage.
 
Shortly thereafter, the buyers filed a lawsuit which named Lee as a defendant. Lee didn’t represent himself or Vantage in the lawsuit. The lawsuit asked the court for a restraining order to prevent Vantage from disposing of its assets and Lee from disposing of Vantage assets payable or transferable to Vantage. The trial court then entered an injunction preventing said conduct.
 
The buyer’s lawyer then learned that Lee may have transferred Vantage funds from the BankBoston account and deposited them in a Vantage account at Bristol County Savings Bank. After an attachment was served on BankBoston it revealed that Lee had withdrew $20,304 from Vantage’s account in order to defeat the court’s injunctive order.
 
After illegally withdrawing the $20,304, Lee used all of the funds to reduce the principal amount on an outstanding loan on two parcels of land in Easton, Massachusetts, the title to which was held by the Devon Street Realty Trust. Lee was the sole trustee of the trust, and Vantage was the sole beneficiary. Lee’s use of the funds was a willful violation of the injunction issued by the trial court.
 
The buyer’s attorney then filed a complaint for contempt against Vantage and Lee for violating the court’s injunctive order. On the same day, the court ordered Lee to deposit $20,304 with either the court or the buyer’s counsel and scheduled a contempt hearing. Lee received Judge Butler’s order, but intentionally failed to comply with it. Put simply, Lee told Judge Butler “Up Yours!”
 
At the conclusion of the contempt hearing, Judge Butler found Lee in contempt.
 
As a consequence of his misconduct, the apologists for Attorney Misfits sitting on the Board of Overseers punished Lee by gifting him with a complimentary 60month suspension of his law license.
 
As we speak (December 2012) Lee practices with Long Built Homes, Inc. at 158 Charles McCombs Blvd. in New Bedford, Massachusetts.
 

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