Suspended Ky. attorney, wife receive prison time for wire fraud, failure to pay taxes

Published 4:20 pm Wednesday, September 20, 2023

By Tom Latek, Kentucky Today

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (KY) – A suspended Kentucky attorney and his wife each received more than two years in federal prison during their sentencing at U.S. District Court in Louisville after pleading guilty in May to charges of wire fraud and willful failure to pay tax.

According to court documents, Andrew Nicholas Clooney, 55, was sentenced to two years and nine months in prison, followed by another two years of supervised release. Christel Marie Clooney, 51, received  two years and three months in prison for her role, followed by two years of supervised release. There is no parole in the federal system.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Kentucky says Andrew Clooney practiced as a personal injury attorney through the Clooney Law Office, while his wife Christel served as the office manager. From August 2016 through October 2018, the couple used funds that belonged to clients of the Clooney Law Office for their own personal expenses.

In addition, the two made approximately $426,098 in income in 2016, on which they owed approximately $107,140 in federal income taxes. However, the couple neither filed a tax return for tax year 2016 nor paid any of their outstanding tax liability for that year.

Besides the prison time and supervised release, Andrew Clooney and Christel Clooney were also ordered by the Court to pay $663,965.16 in restitution to their former clients.

The United States Secret Service office in Louisville and the Cincinnati Field Office of the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division, investigated the case.

It should be noted that Andrew Clooney was indefinitely suspended from the practice of law in a unanimous order issued by the Kentucky Supreme Court on April 18, 2019, for failure to respond to a complaint filed against him by the Kentucky Bar Association, stemming from a separate, unrelated incident.