One of the first pieces of advice that I give to new clients is to take down any social networking profiles that they may have (if they tend to use these accounts, like Facebook or MySpace, to talk about or post evidence of their criminal activity).
Another recent story out of Seattle reaffirms this advice. To read the complete story, check out this link to the original CBS News.com story.
Maxi Sopo was living the dream of a fugitive abroad, kicking back on the beaches of Cancun during the day and partying in the clubs at night. Then, Maxi Sopo did two (2) things that are NEVER a good idea to do when you are hiding from law enforcement. First, Sopo started posting Facebook messages about how much fun he was having. He then accepted a “Friend Request” from a former Justice Department official.
Because of these poor decisions, Maxi Sopo, a 26-year-old native of Cameroon, is now in a Mexico City jail awaiting extradition back to the United States to await his trial on Federal charges of Bank Fraud.
(right) Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Scoville displays part of the Facebook page, and an enlarged profile photo, of fugitive Maxi Sopo. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Even in the hold-nothing-back world of social networking, where police search Facebook photos for evidence of underage drinking and watch YouTube videos to identify riot suspects, it’s rare that a fugitive helps authorities this much (see Maxi Sopo’s Facebook profile below).
Prosecutors say he masterminded the Bank Fraud scheme with Edward Asatoorians, who was convicted by a Federal jury in Seattle last week. Testimony at trial indicated the pair persuaded young co-conspirators to lie about their income to obtain loans for fabricated auto purchases, and then used the money to prop up Asatoorians’ business and to take an expensive trip to Las Vegas.
As a prosecutor with the State Attorney’s Office in Clearwater, Florida, attorney Nicholas J. Dorsten, Esq. was one of the first prosecutors in the State to use popular social networking sites such as Facebook and Myspace to find incriminating evidence against individuals he was prosecuting for crimes such as DUI Manslaughter and First Degree Murder.
In another high-profile First Degree Murder case, attorney Nicholas J. Dorsten, Esq. served a search warrant on MySpace.com in Beverly Hills, California to obtain incriminating information leading to the arrest and ultimate conviction of Asian Pride Gang member Kevin Yun for his role in setting up an Armed Robbery and First Degree Felony Murder. For more information on this case, please check out another prior St. Pete Times article.
After leaving the State Attorney’s Office and creating the Blake & Dorsten, P.A., in Clearwater, former prosecutor Nicholas J. Dorsten is NOW ON YOUR SIDE.
If your criminal and/or traffic-related case requires an aggressive and experienced defense, the Blake & Dorsten, P.A. will be there for you. 365/24/7. To speak directly with criminal defense Attorney Nicholas J. Dorsten, Esq. please call 727.286.6141 or email Attorney Nicholas J. Dorsten, Esq. at: firstname.lastname@example.org