Ray Zapata Loses Appeal and Checks Into Prison
SAN ANGELO, TX – A man convicted of forgery, theft and money laundering for his part in a scheme was booked into the Tom Green County jail at 9:07 p.m. Wednesday evening to begin his prison sentence.
Ray Zapata, 68, was one two men convicted in a high profile case in which San Angelo millionaire slumlord John Sullivan died under mysterious circumstances and a hand written will appeared and was probated leaving Sullivan's $8 million estate to attorney John Young.
Zapata and Young were both convicted for the forgery of John Sullivan’s will. Sullivan was a slumlord multimillionaire in San Angelo who was facing charges of sexual assault of a child when he was found dead in the bathroom of his home in June 2014. Zapata was Sullivan’s bail bondsman; Young was his criminal defense attorney. In court testimony, the jury believed the two stole the old man’s estimated $8,168,284 estate. The estimate of the value of the Sullivan estate was provided in court testimony and documents.
Zapata was convicted on two counts of forgery of a financial instrument, one count of theft of property valued at more than $200,000, and one count of money laundering in the amount of $20,000 or more but less than $100,000 on May 17, 2017. He was sentenced to six months in the state pen and ordered to pay $1.8 million in restitution to the Sullivan estate in addition to 10 years probation.
Young was convicted in a separate trial in November 2017 of two counts of forgery, one count of theft, and one count of money laundering. He was sentenced by a Tom Green County jury to 730 days in prison for the forgery charges and 11 years in prison for the theft and money laundering charges.
The Texas 3rd Court of Appeals affirmed the Tom Green County district court’s convictions of both Ray Zapata and John Young. The appellate court upheld Zapata’s conviction on June 19. Young lost his appeal July 17.
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