A disbarred lawyer from Camden County pleaded guilty Monday to defrauding a Delaware man of almost $2 million in a scheme claiming to fund loans to Eagles season-ticket holders, then spending the money on gambling at casinos and personal expenses, according to acting U.S. Attorney in New Jersey Rachael A. Honig.
Frank N. Tobolsky, 59, of Cherry Hill, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Noel L. Hillman in Camden to one count of wire fraud.
Tobolsky’s lawyer, Lisa Lewis, a federal defender, could not be reached for comment.
Honig said in a news release that starting in 2013, Tobolsky raised money from the victim, purportedly as an investment that would loan money to Eagles season-ticket holders who owned seat licenses.
The victim was told that the seat licenses would be used as collateral to secure the loans. The victim sent Tobolsky about $2.4 million to invest in the purported business venture, but the money was not used for loans to season-ticket holders. Instead, Tobolsky used a substantial portion on personal expenses, prosecutors said.
He faces a maximum 20 years in prison and maximum fine of $250,000, or twice the loss to any victim or gain to Tobolsky, whichever is greatest. His sentencing is scheduled for Feb. 10.
In 2018, Tobolsky was separately charged by state authorities in Atlantic County on theft offenses in an alleged scheme in which authorities said he fraudulently sold an Eagles Stadium Builder License to a victim and then deposited the money into his account at the Golden Nugget casino. According to Atlantic County court records, Tobolsky entered a pretrial diversionary program.
Also in 2018, Tobolsky was disbarred in New Jersey for stealing $32,500 from a client’s escrow account to use for gambling. He also was disbarred in Pennsylvania later that year.
The Disciplinary Review Board decision in New Jersey summarized at length claims by Tobolsky that he had a nearly lifelong struggle with gambling. His father took him to a racetrack when he was 6 and then introduced him to football pools a few years later, and Tobolsky struggled with gambling and depression ever since, according to the decision.
The review board rejected Tobolsky’s defense that he should not be disbarred for his actions because he could not think straight because of a gambling addiction and depression.