in Houston, Texas
State Rep. Ron Reynolds denies charge of attempting to solicit business illegally
Tuesday, May 01, 2012, 10:35AM CST
By Mark Lisheron
gavel

The plot involving state Rep. Ron Reynolds and the suddenly hot boutique crime of barratry has gone from consomme to bisque.

Barratry, as you may recall from our recent report, is an illegal attempt to solicit business. This form of drumming up clientele, when applied to lawyers, is commonly referred to as ambulance chasing. The practice is quite often whispered about and very rarely prosecuted.

According to a complaint filed by a Houston lawyer who had been in a car wreck, Reynolds, the first-term representative for District 27, Tony Ha, a chiropractor from Bellaire, and Adriene Kae Anderson, a marketing specialist, conspired to take on the lawyer’s case, the Houston Chronicle is reporting today.

The lawyer decided to become an undercover operative after being contacted by Anderson or someone in her employ soliciting a visit to Ha, according to prosecutor Wendy Baker.

Although not injured, the lawyer took the appointment and allowed Ha to poke and press on her until she was in pain, Baker said. Ha then allegedly set up a schedule of future chiropractic sessions.

The lawyer told prosecutors she was asked by Ha’s office staff to fill out a form agreeing to be represented by Reynolds.

Reynolds, D-Missouri City, appeared in court denying he committed barratry. "I stand in front of you wrongfully accused, personally and professionally embarrassed by the unfortunate allegations against me," he said.

Attorneys for Ha and Anderson argued their clients had followed industry guidelines and were marketing a new client.

More: Fox 26 has video from the courtroom, and KTRK Channel 13 posted statements issued by Ha and Anderson.

***
Contact Mark Lisheron at 512-299-2318 or mark@texaswatchdog.org or on Twitter at @marktxwatchdog.

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