Attorney claims mistake was made in case against former Sebring judge
An attorney for Diane Vettori-Caraballo, a former Sebring judge, has questioned the decision of the judge ordering her to pay nearly $185,000.
Vettori-Caraballo pleaded guilty to one count of mail fraud, one count of structuring cash deposits, and one count of making false statements to law enforcement earlier this year for her involvement in stealing cash between $100,200 and $328,000 in cash from the home of a client that died.
According to Attorney John Juhasz, who filed the document with the Mahoning County Probate Court, there were two errors in the case.
In the document, Juhasz argues that "the trial court erred and abused its discretion in assessing $12,059.78 in prejudgment interest, as it had no legal authority to do so."
The document says that nowhere in the complaint was there a request for prejudgment interest.
The second error says that Vettori-Caraballo was "denied due process and liberties after the fairness of the proceedings were completely destroyed by the trial court and Appellee engaging in ex parte communications and other improper behavior.
Ex parte communication occurs when a judge or juror communicates with a party about the case outside of the presence of the opposing party or the opposing party's attorney.
The document also alleges that the judge revised the settlement proposal without making it known to all parties involved.
The document concludes that "there was neither a legal nor an evidentiary basis for the award of prejudgment interest.
Vettori-Caraballo started her federal prison sentence in September.