West Virginia Record

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BB&T files suit against Dante DiTrapano, wife

By Lawrence Smith | Feb 25, 2011

CHARLESTON – A disbarred Charleston attorney and his wife face new legal troubles, only this time in civil court.

Dante, 48, and Teri DiTrapano, 51, are named as co-defendants in a breach of contract suit filed by Branch Banking and Trust Feb. 14 in Kanawha Circuit Court. In its compliant, BB&T alleges the DiTrapanos are in arrears nearly $150,000 on an installment contract on which they defaulted in 2008.

According to the suit, BB&T and the DiTrapanos entered into the installment contract on July 1, 1999. Using property they owned at 2605 Kanawha Ave. in Charleston as collateral, the DiTrapanos received $383,000 from BB&T.

However, records show the DiTrapanos defaulted on the installment contract on Jan. 22, 2008. On an unspecified date, BB&T foreclosed on the property, and later sold it at action.

After sale of the property, BB&T maintains the DiTrapanos still owe $145,934.50.

BB&T seeks judgment against the DiTrapanos for the outstanding balance of the installment contract plus seven percent pre- and post-judgment interest. It is represented by Christopher R. Moore with the Martinsburg law firm of Martin and Seibert.

The case is assigned to Judge Louis H. "Duke" Bloom.

Five years of troubles

Two years ago, Dante plead guilty to forging a signature for a $500,000 loan from United Bank. Though he faced up to 30 years in prison, he was sentenced in Jan. 2010, to serve only one day behind bars, and five years supervised release.

The matter was only the latest in a serious of legal woes the DiTrapanos faced beginning in 2006.

That year, both were arrested in St. Petersburg, Fla., and charged with multiple offenses, including possession of crack cocaine. According to police, Dante rented three rooms at the St. Petersburg Hilton were he invited friends for a one-night party before he entered a drug rehabilitation program the next day.

The DiTrapanos were each released on $5,000 bond. Two weeks later, Dante was arrested in Florida on a warrant for failing to appear at hearing regarding the drug charges.

The next month police in West Virginia executed a search warrant at the DiTrapano's home on Johnson Road in Charleston. There they found at least seven handguns, boxes of ammunition and drug paraphernalia.

In July, Dante plead guilty in U.S. District Court to a single charge he was a drug addict in possession of firearms. He was ordered into a drug treatment facility in Huntington pending sentencing.

As a condition of his release, DiTrapano paid a $10,000 bond, and agreed to, among other things, not possess any firearms, not travel outside southern West Virginia and submit to random drug tests.

In September 2006, DiTrapano's bond was revoked after he not only tested positive for cocaine on Aug. 29, but for violating the terms of his home confinement following his release from the drug treatment center.

After he was sentenced to prison for the firearms conviction, DiTrapano was arrested the day prior to his release in Jan. 2007 on a fugitive warrant from Georgia. While he was on supervised release, DiTrapano was arrested in April on charges of felony possession of cocaine, and misdemeanor possession of marijuana.

In April 2007, Judge David Faber sentenced DiTrapano to 24 months in prison, the maximum allowed under federal guidelines, for violating the terms of his supervised release. As a result of the criminal charges, the state Supreme Court disbarred DiTrapano the next month, and Georgia's high court followed suit the next year.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number 11-C-237

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