Divorce Attorney Linked to Dirty DUI Scandal Facing Federal Charges

Mary Nolan, who was connected to a Concord private investigator who pleaded guilty in an East Bay corruption case, was arrested Tuesday.

A San Ramon divorce lawyer accused of working with a Concord private investigator to spy on clients' spouses was arrested and charged Tuesday with six counts of unlawfully intercepting communications and tax evasion, according to the Department of Justice.

Between about Aug. 9, 2007 and at least Sept. 9, 2007, Mary Nolan, 60, referred clients to work with private investigator Christopher Butler to plant concealed listening devices in the vehicles of her clients' spouses or significant others, according to the indictment.

Also, on numerous occasions, the indictment says, Nolan and her staff accessed the listening devices to eavesdrop on conversations to gain an advantage in their legal proceedings.

Butler, 50, pleaded guilty earlier this year to drug possession and sales, robbery, conspiracy against civil rights, extortion and other crimes he committed as a private investigator working with members of the Contra Costa County Drug Enforcement Team, or CNET, over a period of about four years.

(Related: Private Investigator Christopher Butler Pleads Guilty in CNET Corruption Case)

In March 2011, one of Nolan's former clients, who declined to give her name, told Patch that Nolan referred her to Butler in 2009.

When she met Butler, she said that her "skin crawled" when Butler told her what he could have done to her then-husband, including planting drugs in his car and, if needed, destroying his car by pushing it over a cliff.

She said Butler also told her he had broken into the home of a Marin County millionaire, put spyware on his computer and planted drugs in the house.

When the scandal broke, Patch repeatedly tried to reach Nolan, but she didn't respond.

(Related: D.A.'s Office Reviewing 'Dirty DUI' Arrests, Including That of Tri-Valley Winemaker Mitchell Katz)

The indictment also says Nolan willfully attempted to evade a large part of her income tax, filing false returns from 2005 through 2008.

During that four-year period, Nolan reported taxable incomes of about $21,400, $12,500, $53,900 and $48,100. But the Department of Justice says her taxable income was about $307,000, $411,000, $575,000 and $414,000, the indictment states.

The unreported taxable income totaled about $1.84 million, resulting in additional tax due of about $594,000.

The maximum penalty for tax evasion is five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The maximum penalty for conspiracy to unlawfully intercept communications is five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The maximum statutory penalty for unlawful interception of communications is five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Nolan's bail is set at $250,000 and her next court date is Sept. 25.


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Phil Dominic September 25, 2012 at 07:09 AM
Clients of Mary nolan who have been burned, Please contact me, I have an idea how some or all of you can get all or some of your money back.(one26bug@yahoo.com) I've have nothing to hide, I use my real name and Mary Nolan has ripped me off also! And has infected my life and that of my son. I will use every legal avenue to see that all her wrong doings , come to the fore front...And those that helped her,From the bottom to the top.
Sid Pawar September 26, 2012 at 01:44 AM
Phil, my life has been destroyed by the corrupt judges and lawyers in the alameda county court. My daughter is in DC with the mother. These mosters drove me to the edge of insanity, just because I loved my daughter. Please please please, I want to work with you to clean out these corrupt courts. Please send me an email to "richsid@yahoo.com"
Sid Pawar September 26, 2012 at 01:54 AM
Nicole, are you that naive? WAKE UP.. Thease courts should be officially changed to "Mafia Courts". Hannah Sims, used to threaten me by making Oooohooo oooohooo sounds as she described what she did to her own husband. You do not think these monsters hang together? You should have been present when, I was in front of Judge Carville getting systematically destroyed, financially, emotionally, physically. I had two major anxiety attacks requiring hospitalization, and some other things that I am soo soo embarassed (but will be putting down in my lawsuit against these scums)..WAKE UP>>>
Sid Pawar September 26, 2012 at 01:58 AM
Yeah Mary, wait till your kid that you raised by your own god damn hand and feet (because the mother was travelling internationally 3 to 4 times a month since the child was 3 months repeat 3 months old) gets taken away from you. I pray that you feel and ounce of the pain that I feel every effing day... and then make this asinine comment..you are just as callous as these scumbags in the family courts. Shame on you..
Douglas Varney November 06, 2012 at 04:22 PM
Phil, I could use any info you can provide. I am pursuing a complaint with the California State Bar and could use any input you can provide. Doug Varney 925/838-8398


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