Iowa attorney in overbilling case has law license suspended
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — One of four attorneys convicted of overbilling the state of Iowa while serving as lawyers for the indigent has had his law license suspended for at least a year.
The Iowa Supreme Court on Friday indefinitely suspended the license of Clinton attorney Matthew Noel for at least a year. Noel pleaded guilty last year to two misdemeanor theft charges. Auditors say he repeatedly billed for meetings he did not attend and made false mileage claims resulting in nearly $15,000 in overpayments. He received a suspended jail sentence, was fined several hundred dollars and has repaid the money he overcharged.
The high court rejected Noel’s plea for a 90-day suspension, noting his misrepresentations were repeated over years. One dissenter, Justice David Wiggins, argued that he would have revoked Noel’s law license, meaning Noel would not have been able to practice for at least five years.