Six US lawyers charged over hospital PI plot

Six US personal injury (PI) lawyers have been charged by the Manhattan District Attorney (DA) for participating in a multimillion-dollar scam to gain clients by bribing hospital staff

The six lawyers, all from small firms in New York and New Jersey, are accused of paying hospital staff, some of whom have also been charged, to give them confidential information about potential clients, who were most often accident victims.

According to the Manhattan DA, 'runners', the key hospital workers involved in the scheme, would persuade the patients to instruct the lawyers on accident claims in return for an illegal referral fee of up to $300 (£190).

The runners also received a cut of the lawyers' typical 33.3 per cent contingency fee for a successful accident claim, according to the charges.

The lawyers charged are as follows: Anthony Ferrandino and Lawrence Dicker of Dicker & Ferrandino; Frederick Zarkin of Loft & Zarkin; Scott Sessler and Daniel Chilewich of Sessler & Chilewich; and Olga Sorkin of Olga Sorkin PC. The lawyers' firms are also named as defendants in the case.