PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) — Portland Police confirm they are investigating, in conjunction with the Maine Attorney General’s Office, a reported embezzlement from the Dan Lilley Law Firm.
Lilley was a well- known Portland attorney who handled some of the state’s highest-profile cases. He passed away on March 11 after spending a few days in the hospital. He was 79 years old.
Police are not saying who they are investigating at this time. They also say the exact amount of money missing has not been determined yet. However, if the allegations in a civil lawsuit filed on behalf of the law firm are true, it would be one of the largest embezzlement cases in Maine.
The civil lawsuit, filed on behalf of the Daniel G Lilley Law Offices, accuses a former employee of writing checks to themselves and forging Lilley’s signature over a period of five years.
The amounts of money are staggering. $76,670 in 2013, $223,862 in 2014, $288, 350 in 2015, $239, 795 in 2016 and $15,656 this year.
The suit also accuses the person of diverting client payments to themselves. In all, the civil suit accuses the former employer of stealing more than $856,000. It goes on to say the amounts were discovered after Dan Lilley’s death and a partial review of the law firm’s accounts.
Dan Lilley went from former state prosecutor to colorful defense attorney who took on some of the state’s biggest cases. He defended Tony DiMillo of DiMillo’s Restaurant, getting him an acquittal in a big federal tax evasion case. He helped convince a jury to find restaurant owner Jackie Bevins not guilty after she shot her husband 15 times and he represented a key defendant in the Kennebunk Zumba prostitution case.
The allegations in the civil lawsuit are just that, allegations. They are not the results of a criminal investigation. A criminal investigation is underway. Police are not naming any suspects at this time and they say the exact amount of money missing is not yet known.
We reached out to the attorney who filed the suit on behalf of Lilley’s law firm. He did not want to comment on the case until after the criminal investigation has concluded.