'Devil's Advocate' in court on fraud charges
01 February 2013
A man who held himself out as the lawyer for the likes of Saddam Hussein and Arkan, and who said he would happily have represented Hitler, is in court this week on 25 charges of fraud and money laundering.
Giovanni di Stefano is an old RollOnFriday favourite
. Despite having no discernable legal qualifications, he regularly touted himself around the media as the "Devil's Advocate" who would act for tyrants and paedophiles. He claimed he was an Italian avvocato, and had a roster of clients which also included Nicholas van Hoogstraten, Chemical Ali and Jonathan King.
||This man thinks that you think that he's a lawyer |
After more than a decade he's finally been hauled up. Prosecutors told Southwark Crown Court in London that he'd managed to persuade clients to give him nearly £1m after claiming that he was legally qualified. David Aaronberg QC said that di Stefano had printed "avvocato
" all over his business cards and letterhead, and had told Mr Justice Peter Smith back in 2002 that he was "an Italian advocate of the Italian Bar
" and "a responsible lawye
Di Stefano denies all the charges. The case continues.