Acting U.S. Attorney William E. Fitzpatrick announced Monday a Bergen County, New Jersey woman pleaded guilty to using fake litigation support companies to defraud two New York law firms, where she was a partner our of millions of dollars.Fifty-two-year-old Keila Ravelo of Englewood Cliffs worked as a partner for a law firm from July 1, 2005 through October 2010. She then became partner in another law firm and worked there from October 2010 through November 2014, according to court documents.
Ravelo conspired with her husband, 51-year-old Melvin Feliz, from 2008 through July 2014 to defraud the victim law firms, by creating two limited liability companies that purportedly provided the victim law firms with litigation support. But, the LLCs did not provide the firms any services.
Feliz and Ravelo claimed to have provided work to the firms’ clients and provide them with fraudulent invoices. Ravelo approved payments to the two LLCs and utilized the proceeds for her personal expenses.
The LLCs received about $7.8 million from the victim law firms, but failed to report the earnings on their tax returns.
The wire fraud charge carries a maximum 20-year prison sentence and $250,000 fine. The tax evasion charge carries a five-year prison sentence and a $250,000 fine. Felix is awaiting sentencing and Ravelo will be sentenced on March 5, 2018.