On Friday, June 23, 2023, the Florida Bar filed a disciplinary complaint against attorney George Franjola, accusing him of engaging in “retaliatory conduct” and making “unfulfilled threats of legal action” against opposing counsel during litigation between Franjola’s client, Prioria Robotics, and Condor Aerial.
The case is entitled “The Florida Bar v. George Franjola” with case no. 2018-30, 483.
The complaint alleges Franjola sent a letter to a former Prioria employee who provided a damning affidavit supporting Condor’s claims, stating “we will immediately file suit against [you] for injunctive relief, for damages, and for defamation.” According to Franjola’s testimony, the threats were intended “to force [the witness] to rescind the statements he made against Prioria in his affidavit.” However, Prioria did not actually have the funds to follow through with the threatened lawsuit.
Franjola also allegedly emailed the attorney for Condor Aerial stating:
“I will file the Amended Complaint tomorrow without naming you and your firm as defendants. However, if you decide not to withdraw from the case, you need to advise me now that you consent to allow me to immediately file a Second Amended Complaint adding you and your firm as defendants.”
After that attorney withdrew, Franjola then sent new opposing counsel the first page of a Second Amended Complaint adding the attorney and his law firm as defendants.
The court sanctioned Prioria for spoliation of evidence and noted “the record contains examples of Plaintiffs retaliatory conduct every time an allegation of spoliation was made, including unfulfilled threats of legal action against both a Defense witness and Defendants’ prior and current counsel.”
The Florida Bar alleges Franjola violated rules of professional conduct by asserting frivolous claims and engaging in conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice. If found guilty of ethics violations, Franjola could face discipline ranging from a reprimand to disbarment.
Mr. Franjola practices in Ocala, Florida. He is licensed in Florida. His info can be found on lawyersjustia.com.
A copy of the original filing can be found here.