"AvoidAClaim" Blog

LAWPRO's blog helps you avoid legal malpractice claims
Subscribe

Separation agreement scam by Rina (or Tina) Walton (or Waltson)

May 13, 2013 By: FraudInfo Category: Confirmed frauds

[Updated Dec 2013]

Nearly 100 lawyers in Ontario and the U.S. have notified us that they’ve been contacted by the purported Rina (or Tina) Walton (or Waltson) with regards to a to a collaborative family law agreement dispute. This is a fraud we have seen before under several other names and similar scenarios. For examples of other names attached to this kind of fraud see our Confirmed Fraud Page. For an explanation of how this fraud works see our Fraud Fact Sheet.

Here is the initial email:

From:
Date: Mon, May 13, 2013 at 10:08 AM
Subject: Enforcement
To:

I wish to file an enforcement petition against my ex-spouse for breaching
the court’s decree with regards to payment of property settlement.
kindly advise via(rin.waltson@att.net)

Ms. Rina W.

A lawyer who replied got this response and fake documentation:

Thank you for your prompt response. Am living in Japan and Tomio [sometimes Romio] Walton (ex-husband) lives in Orlando, Florida. Due to the time difference (+13hrs EST) it is a little bit difficult to determine the best time to call you. Following our divorce, we agreed under a negotiated settlement agreement which is incorporated, merged into and made part of the court decree for a one-time payment of $557,000.00USD for Family support (this includes child support, alimony and medical support). To his credit, he has paid me $208,000.00USD from a total of $557,000.00 but still owing $349.000.00USD and the due time for completion of payment is over. Thus, I request your legal counsel and representation to enforce the final judgment thereby compelling him to remit the balance owed me. He is aware of my intention to seek legal actions. Attached is a copy of the separation agreement, and Final Judgment and I will be pleased to provide further information on this case on request. I desire to retain your law firm, please forward your firm’s retainer fee agreement so that we can proceed. Thank you and have a pleasant day.

Regards,
Rina Walton
3F, 3-19-21 Tenjin, Chuo-ku,
Fukuoka-shi, Fukuoka 810-0001

Walton Passport

Walton Separation Agreement

Wang Betty Settlement Agreement

How to handle a real or suspected fraud

If you have been targeted by any of these frauds, please forward any of the emails and supporting documents that you have received to fraudinfo@lawpro.ca.

If you suspect you are acting on a matter that might be a fraud, call LAWPRO at 1-800-410-1013 (416-598-5899). We will talk you through the common fraud scenarios we are seeing and help you spot red flags that may indicate you are being duped. This will help you ask appropriate questions of your client to determine if the matter is legitimate or not. If the matter you are acting on turns out to be a fraud and there is a potential claim, we will work with you to prevent the fraud and minimize potential claims costs.

If you have been successfully duped, please immediately notify LAWPRO as there may be a claim against you.

For more immediate updates on fraud and claims prevention, subscribe to the email or RSS feed updates from LAWPRO’s AvoidAClaim blog.

Fraud Fact Sheet More fraud prevention information and resources are available on the practicePRO Fraud page, including the Fraud Fact Sheet, a handy reference for lawyers and law firm staff that describes the common frauds and the red flags that can help identify them.

49 Responses to “Separation agreement scam by Rina (or Tina) Walton (or Waltson)”


  1. Tina Lee says:

    We received the ‘Rina Walton’ letter, when the attorney responded to the initial email. Same as above with attached documentation. I have emailed it to you.

    We would like to know what is the ‘scam’? How are they trying to collect funds? The person they say owes, doesn’t exist!

    Tina, Legal Assistant, Bradenton, Florida

  2. TimLemieux says:

    Hi Tina,
    The person that owes is also in on the fraud, so they would pay up by sending a fake check to your firm. You’d be asked to deduct your fees and wire the balance to “Rina” overseas. A few days later your bank would tell you it was a bad check and your firm would be left holding the bag.

  3. attorney says:

    I am an attorney and just got emailed the same scam! I asked where they got my email and they said the Cal.Bar!!!!

  4. John Marmaras, Esq. says:

    I am an attorney in Bloomfield, New Jersey. I received the first email earlier this month, and what finally tipped me off was the persistancy of me forwarding my retainer agreement and when I noticed that each email was forwarded from a different email address.

  5. RBK, Esq. says:

    “Ms. Walton” (or whomever it really is) has communicated with my office located in Weymouth, MA recently. These types of scams are common, and the perpetrator is hard, if not impossible to find where it is likely the scam is conducted far off the US shores.

    I worked in the High-Tech, Computer Crime division of the AG’s office sometime ago and like to try to lead these individuals here to the US by appeasing their immense greed that they are somehow going to get money if they arrive. We will see with this one.

    A cursory search of this distant prospective client is revealing in itself as to this persons intentions. Please don’t get taken in by these scam artists no matter how good it looks!

    The scam is perpetrated as follows: Although you asked for a retainer, one that is in valid funds will never be provided. You will be instructed by “Ms. Walton” to take your fee, (hinting to take a disproportionate and exorbitant amount) from the check delivered to you from “Mr. Walton.” A check will arrive via FedEx or from whoever’s account they can steal the numbers from to send you a package from Canada or another distant area stating Mr. Walton is away on assignment. You will be instructed to deposit the check into you IOLTA and send the proceeds via wire or similar methodology to “Ms. Walton.”

    A check enclosed in the FedEx will for all purposes appear valid and will initially clear your IOLTA account. THIS IS THE PART THAT IS SO DANGEROUS WITH THESE SCAMS!!! THE CHECK APPEARS TO HVE CLEARED AND SO YOU SEND THE PROCEEDS ACCORDINGLY. The bank subsequently will learn the funds are not valid and seek recovery of any amounts paid to your account. If you have made a disbursement of the monies, you are personally liable to the bank and are out that money. ALWAYS CALL THE BANK THE CHECK IS DRAWN ON TO VERIFY FUNDS AND THEN HOLD THE FUNDS DEPOSITED TO YOUR ACCOUNT A SUFFICIENT AMOUNT OF TIME TO FULLY CLEAR!

    The Secret Service is the branch of law enforcement who deal with these types of cases.

    Hope this is helpful…

  6. MLB says:

    I received this email along with additional emails that then made me suspect something was not right. I then googled her name and found this page that this is a scam. The last email was that Mr. Walton would be sending our firm money and we should deduct our retainer from the funds received. We never executed an agreement with this person and received several random emails.

  7. Michael Fate says:

    I got the Rina Walton scam email today. Thanks for porting it.

  8. Shannon Becker says:

    I got this email on 5/31/13:

    I wish to file an enforcement petition against my ex-spouse for breaching the court’s decree with regards to payment of Child Support, Spousal Support and Medical Support. Kindly advise via email (rinawalt@att.net) Ms. Rina Walt

    The email it came from, however, was: rinawalt@iprimus.com.au

    My office is located in Mansfield, Ohio. I have received similar emails in the past.

  9. David R. LeRoy says:

    I too have received a couple of emails from Ms. Walton (or whoever he/she is). Fortunately I located your warning prior to spending any further time on this scam. Appreciate the information.

  10. Jim says:

    CT attorney here, just received the Rina W. scam email.

  11. Scotty Lowery says:

    I got the Rina Walton scam email this morning in Bastrop, Louisiana, USA. Disseminating it to my local bar association.

  12. RBK says:

    This perp is not too smart, but please be careful! I have been “playing the game” with this person by sending a fee agreement and supposedly waiting for a prepaid retainer BEFORE getting the new email today. It is my goal to lore this perp into the states by making it appear there is somehow money here for the person to claim (that was collected from someone, obviously not the supposed husband) that is being held to distribute. It is unlikely the perp will go for it, but sometimes greed gets the best of them and we can get them off the Net. These individuals are in Hong Kong, Nigeria or other regions of the world.

  13. DP says:

    I received the following message from waltonrina@iprimus.com.au on June 3, 2013, subject line: “Contempt petition”:

    Dear Counsel,
    I wish to file a case against my ex-spouse for failure to make court
    ordered payments of Child Support,property settlement.
    Regards,
    please reply via:waltonrina@att.net
    Ms Rina

  14. Gregory Wolf says:

    Hi Guys,
    I got the set of docs and emails fr “R. Walton”.
    Thank Gd for google and the woman in my office w/ common sense b/c I was going to start doing a bit of research.
    Also thanks to you people who posted this information to warn us simpletons.
    GAW

  15. Brian says:

    Rina said hello to my firm as well. A joke considering she sends a japanese agreement written in English!

  16. Dan says:

    I got the scam email today asking for my retainer agreement. I thought it was too good to be true so thanks to your guys and google! I know it’s a scam. I will report it to the Secret Service like RBK, Esq. recommended.

    Thanks

  17. Liz says:

    Received this email here in Colorado this morning. Thanks for creating this site.

  18. Tomio Walton (j/k) says:

    I received Ms. Walton’s email today. I just replied,

    “I don’t believe I will be able to assist you in this matter. Best of luck to you.

    Sincerely,

    Tomio Walton”.

    ;-)

  19. Sara says:

    I am a french student. She hacked my email account by making me believe it was an email from the University so I gave my password and during four days she sent
    approximately tree hundred email to law firm with this message :

    Subject : Judgment Enforcement

    I want to know if you can provide legal counsel and representation regarding enforcement of court order (Divorce Decree).
    Rina Walton

  20. Rach says:

    Received the second email this morning. My practice is in Rocky Hill, Connecticut.

  21. Paul says:

    Rina sure get’s around! She just hit our office in Braintree, MA. The Japanese “Decree of Divorce” being in English was tip #1 and the “lawyers” names being non-Japanese was tip #2! A Google search leading me here was the clincher! Thanks! Keep up the good work!

  22. Loco MIke says:

    I just received this email today. I google the name and got this site. Thank you for publishing the information you do.

  23. Sam says:

    I too received this email. Memphis, TN, direct hit. I initially thought “hmmm, I don’t practice that type of law, don’t have a law firm website (or any advertising for that matter), and the email address was from australia. Yea. This is a scam.” And after searching the name “Rina Walton” was glad to find your article explaining, yes, indeed its a scam.

  24. Jan Gellis says:

    Received an initial email a few days ago, answered and then got the follow up email, which sounded like some other scams from a few years ago and which did catch some attorneys unaware of the criminal, underlying premise. Googled the name and found that the scam will likely continue for awhile. Jan

  25. Emma says:

    Just received the Rina e-mail scam at my practice in New Orleans. Googled the names & saw this post. Thanks for the info. If an IOLTA is overdrawn, then the bank must automatically notify the LA Supreme Ct. Disciplinary Board & who wants to deal with them?!

  26. Don Richard says:

    Have recieved the same email and documents.

  27. Scott says:

    Greetings from Atlanta, GA. Got the following email this morning:

    Subject: Motion for Contempt

    Counsel,

    I wish to file an enforcement petition against my ex-spouse for breaching the court’s decree with regards to payment of Child Support, Spousal Support and Medical Support. Kindly advise if your firm handles such case.
    Please reply to waltonrina@att.net

    Rina Walton.

    Strangely, it was sent to an old email address, which is not listed on any website of the firms or the Bar. May have gotten it from Martindale.

  28. Mark B. Morrow says:

    I received the Rina Walton e-mail in Pittsburgh. I suspected that the contact might be a fraud scheme. I responded and got the same documents shown above. Google led me to your site. Thanks for keeping tabs on this.

  29. Mary Ellen says:

    I just received “Rina’s” email scam today. I am an accountant not a lawyer. She is branching out!

  30. Roberta says:

    Hello from Key West, Florida: Just received “Rina’s” e-mail today. We are in Florida and primarily practice in family law which is the target of her email. She has provided the same passport shown on this site along with a Japan final judgment and settlement agreement (in English no less). We have recieved at least 15 of these types of emails over the course of one year. BEWARE!

  31. April says:

    If something seems too good to be true, it probably is….. I received a certified check today for $297,500! Thankfully nothing went further than that. Please be aware!!! I too received the emails, the supporting documents that everyone seems to be getting, and something didn’t seem quite right….was asked for the name of my bank and not given the ex-husband’s (tomio walton’s) contact info. When I did a local search, no info. came up (of course). This is the first time I’ve ever experienced something like this and it is a very unnerving experience. PLEASE TRUST YOUR GUT INSTINCTS.

  32. Larry says:

    I received the same email today (July 1, 2013) in Arizona from our Mutual Client, wanting to enforce Child Support, Spousal Maintenance, Medical. I sent her a return email, asking for details about her divorce decree, the terms, the amount claimed, etc. I looked up her case and couldn’t find it in our County Court, but maybe she had a different maiden name. When I sent the return email, inadvertently using both addresses, the “au” address came back as undeliverable; and the “att.net” went through.
    On a hunch, I did a search for “Rita Walton Australia” and came upon this site! Thank you all for sharing.

  33. Arnie says:

    Just got a copy of the same email with passport and docs. Glad I googled the parties.

  34. Patti says:

    I am a soical worker from Winnipeg Manitoba and received the following e-mail on July 6, 2013:

    > From: Ms. Rina Walton [mailto:k.e.senyszyn@kent.ac.uk]
    > Sent: July-06-13 6:28 AM
    > To: Recipients
    > Subject: Counsel,
    >
    > Counsel, I wish to file an enforcement petition against my ex-spouse for breaching the court’s decree with regards to payment of Child Support, Spousal Support and Medical Support. Kindly advise Ms. Rina Walton Email: rinawalton@mynet.com

    Given that it was from a UK e-mail address, I checked google and lo and behold learned it was a scam.

  35. Hilda says:

    I received an email with the exact language to enforce the Japanese judgment, etc. with a copy of her driver’s license, divorce decree, etc. Being suspicious talked to a lawyer friend and he thought it would be an interesting case. However, the retainer agreement she wanted and which she was going to pay for by certified check was not prepared since she did not pay. Told me she would get back with me in a week. A week later she stated the husband is wanting to settle and was sending my firm a check, to inform her and scan the check to her. Was out of the office for a few days. Today looked at my mail and there is a check with a confidential letter from Tomio Walton stating it is Collaborative Settlement with Rina Walton. Check is drawn on Bank of Montreal and signed by an authorized signing officer for $298,520.23. Been suspicious all along so finally decided to google Tomio Walton (she was saying he name is Tom Walton and he is a medical doctor in Covina, CA.). My office is in Covina, CA. as well.
    Thank goodness for google. I found this and others.

  36. Scott says:

    I got the e-mail and I’m not even a lawyer yet! (Starting law school this year)

    From aepaterson@clear.net.nz:
    “I want to take a legal action against my ex-spouse for
    breaching the court’s decree with regards to payment
    of child support,alimony and medical support.Kindly
    advise If you are taking on new client

    Regards,
    Rina”

  37. SEO for Attorneys says:

    I just got the email and did a Google search. Thanks for the help the article told me exactly what I needed. To the recycle bin with you Mrs. Walton.

  38. Phyllis says:

    I received this email today, but under the name Fumiko Anderson. The emails were verbatim save for the place and ex husband name. Wonder if its reportable given government closure today. I believe I received this one last year under a different name.

  39. Rob says:

    Got the same thing – under the name of Mei Russell. Thanks for identifying the scam!

  40. Samantha says:

    I am an attorney in Virginia. Got this same email today under the name Hitomi Jefferson.

  41. Moira Meltzer-Cohen says:

    I got this too! And then I got roughly the same email from two other names. At which point I thought “Nigeria scam” and googled and found this. I responded to these people and told them I don’t handle these kinds of cases but would be happy to help you find someone who does. Glad I found you before I wasted any more time looking for a Japanese-speaking lawyer. When I asked where she found me she said “the internet.” Good grief. The other two names I got on similar emails were Hitomi Jefferson and Shizuko Newburg.

  42. Steve says:

    It seems that after a brief hiatus whoever is behind the scam is trying it again. I got a copy of the above email but claiming to be from “Mei .B. Russel” sent to the email I have on file with the North Dakota bar.

    I don’t handle things like this so I wasn’t going to get involved anyway, but I figured I’d toss in confirmation that this scam still seems to be running.

  43. Kelly says:

    We are a family law attorney in WA state. I received the same documentation and we went so far as to send her a retainer agreement and get a signed copy back. I wanted to add that he/she is now using the name Dina Dalton and Romio Dalton, also R Walton and Tina Walton.

  44. Jane says:

    I am an Arizona family law attorney and I just received the email and related documents. The names used were Dina Dalton and Romio Dalton

  45. Sarah says:

    Pittsburgh, PA here. I don’t practice family law and got this scam today:

    Mei Russell [meirrusell@gmail.com]
    “Dear Counsel,

    My Name Is Mei .B. Russell. I wish to file an enforcement petition against my ex-spouse for breaching the court’s decree with regards to payment of child support, alimony and medical support. If you are available for such case Kindly Advise immediately.

    Regards,
    Mei”

  46. Ron Price-Jones, Barrister, etc. says:

    She/he/it/they are now hitting at least one office in Saskatchewan (mine) but this time her name is Miura Hitoshi and he is Jimmy Hitoshi. The cheapskates are using the same passport as you show here but with 2009 – 2019 issue and expiry dates.
    I tried to elicit further information – as to how they found me, etc., but nothing has come in.
    Just for fun, I tried to enlist someone to translate what appears to be Japanese script at the head and foot of the Separation Agreement and in the corners of the Decree of Divorce- just in case they read something like “Toyoda Novelty Company” or a warning not to believe in them.
    Do you really ned their emails forwarded (some are alresdy in my scrap bin) when they pretty well stick to the script you reported?

  47. TimLemieux says:

    We’re always happy to see the emails, but if its the same script then don’t worry if you’ve already deleted it.

  48. Kaitlyn says:

    I’m getting inundated with these. It’s absurd.

  49. Kaitlyn says:

    johncourt@iprimus.com.au

    Please do you handle child support enforcement in violation of a court order regarding support payments?

    Ms Hania.

    I feel like i’m on a hitlist…this is one of many



Leave a Reply