June 19, 1991
IN RE JOSE SANTANA, RESPONDENT. A MEMBER OF THE BAR OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA COURT OF APPEALS
On Report and Recommendation of the Board on Professional Responsibility
Terry and Farrell, Associate Judges, and Reilly, Senior Judge.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Per Curiam
The Board on Professional Responsibility has recommended that respondent be disbarred on the basis of findings that he violated Disciplinary Rules 9-103 (A) (misappropriation of client funds), 1-102 (A)(4) (dishonesty), and 7-101 (A)(1) (intentional failure to carry out the lawful objectives of a client). *fn1 Respondent contests neither the findings nor the recommendation of the Board. Indeed, he did not answer the disciplinary petition filed by Bar Counsel, *fn2 did not appear before the Hearing Committee, and filed no objections before the Board to the Committee's findings and Conclusions, which the Board adopted.
We in turn adopt the findings and recommendations of the Board. According to evidence presented to the Committee, respondent was retained by a client in connection with an Internal Revenue Service demand for payment of back taxes. The client agreed to give respondent funds to be held in escrow while the IRS was approached in an effort to resolve the tax problem. The client paid respondent a total of $2,350 in escrow funds and $900 in legal fees. Later, however, when the client went to respondent's office to make another payment, he learned that respondent and his law firm had changed location; when the client found the new address of the firm, he was informed that respondent was no longer with the firm and had left no forwarding address. The client received no further communication from appellant and was never repaid the $2,350 that was to have been placed in escrow. Respondent never performed any meaningful legal services on behalf of the client.
This evidence, which was undisputed, fully supports the findings that respondent committed misappropriation, In re Harrison, 461 A.2d 1034 (D.C. 1983), engaged in conduct involving dishonesty, In re Thompson, 579 A.2d 218 (D.C. 1990), and intentionally failed to seek the lawful objectives of his client. *fn3 Under the court's decision in In re Addams, 579 A.2d 190 (D.C. 1990) (en banc), therefore, the only appropriate sanction is disbarment. *fn4
Accordingly, it is ORDERED that Jose A. Santana shall be disbarred from the practice of law in the District of Columbia effective thirty days from the date of this opinion.