Other Peoples Money

Firm says Atlanta law partner embezzled $30 million

A one-time managing partner of a prominent Atlanta law firm that specializes in real estate closings has been accused by his own practice of embezzling more than $30 million from escrow and other accounts, according a lawsuit filed this week in Fulton County Superior Court.

Nathan E. “Nat” Hardwick IV, who ran the residential practice at Morris Hardwick Schneider, allegedly diverted money held in accounts by the firm and a related title company for personal expenses, such as a portion of the purchase price of a $3 million condo in the St. Regis Atlanta hotel and $4 million he allegedly wired to casinos.

Ed Garland, an attorney for Hardwick, called the allegations “false,” and said “Nat looks forward to clearing his name.”

“Nat became aware of a problem with the accounting earlier this summer and immediately alerted his partners and initiated a review by outside auditors,” Garland said in a statement.

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