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Swanson sues fake lawyer

Swanson sues fake lawyer Click to Enlarge Photo:

May 14, 2014 at 4:49 am

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson is accusing a Shakopee woman and her companies of falsely posing as immigration lawyers.

Swanson alleges that Ornella Hammerschmidt and her companies charged immigrants thousands of dollars for legal work on immigration matters that she was not legally authorized to perform.

The lawsuit was filed Tuesday in Hennepin County against Hammerschmidt and two companies, American Group US Inc. and The Legacy Firm Corp., which she runs.

Swanson alleges the defendants charged Spanish-speaking immigrants as much as $12,000 for legal work on applications for citizenship, asylum and other immigration matters. The lawsuit says Hammerschmidt is not an attorney but held herself out as one.

The lawsuit seeks an injunction and restitution for consumers.

Phone messages left for Hammerschmidt were not immediately returned Tuesday.

Mike Tanner

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