Disbarred lawyer pleads guilty identity theft charges

COLUMBIA, SC (WCSC) - A former Florida lawyer pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court to identity theft.

John Mark Marino, 70, of Pompano Beach, Fla., entered the guilty plea, said U.S. Attorney William Nettles.

According to prosecutors, Marino was known by the name of R. Mark Hunter and had practiced law until he was disbarred in 2005. He then legally changed his name to Marino at which point he assumed the identity of a retired attorney in New York State who had the same name.

Hunter used his former identity's bar License Number to substantiate his assumed identity and to facilitate the sale of investments, said prosecutors. The identity theft was discovered when he tried to sell an investment to an undercover FBI agent in South Carolina.

"Identity theft is a growing problem and we intend to aggressively pursue these cases in an effort to provide a market with financial integrity," said Nettles.

If convicted, Marino faces a mandatory sentence of two years in prison.

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