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Missing Attorney in Colorado Jail, Allegedly Stole $1M From Clients

BRECKENRIDGE, Colo.

 

Royal "Scoop" Daniel III, the Breckenridge attorney accused of stealing up to $1 million from his clients, was jailed early Tuesday in the town that he vanished from more than four years ago.

Daniel, 66, entered the Summit County Detentions Center in Breckenridge at about midnight, said sheriff's spokeswoman Tracy LeClair. He was being held without bond and has a Thursday hearing where he'll be advised of the charges against him.

Daniel was arrested Wednesday by U.S. Border Patrol officers when he tried to walk from Mexico into the United States at a pedestrian border entry near San Diego.

During a jail interview with KNSD-TV in San Diego, Daniel said he had a pleasant life in Mexico but decided to return and take care of unfinished business. Daniel denied taking money from clients and said he left Colorado because of the pressures of his job and other responsibilities.

Daniel's April 2007 disappearance and alleged crimes has angered acquaintances in Breckenridge, where townspeople launched a massive search for him after he vanished early one morning from his law office. Friends and police initially suspected foul play because the prominent attorney's broken eyeglasses were found in his office and someone placed a 911 hang-up call from his cellphone.

Daniel is charged with felony theft, which carries a maximum penalty of 12 years in prison and a $750,000 fine, Leclair said. He's also charged with felony commercial bribery, which carries a maximum penalty of 1½ years in prison and a $100,000 fine.

 

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