New Orleans con artist gets 20 years for defrauding an autistic man

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A New Orleans grifter has earned herself 20 years in prison for defrauding an autistic man.

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Kristina Galjour, 45, stole more than $2 million in inheritance money by posing as a lawyer and even coerced her victim into giving her his house.

Earlier this week, Galjour entered a guilty plea on charges of theft over $25,000 and three counts of impersonating a lawyer. The NY Post reports that several other charges — including money laundering, bank fraud and exploitation of the infirm — were dropped.

Galjour was sentenced to 20 years in prison and ordered to pay restitution, including $1.3 million to the man she defrauded.

That man is New Orleans resident Lawrence Mopsik, a 59-year-old with autism spectrum disorder whose parents were careful to provide for his future even after they were gone.

Both of Mopsik’s parents died in 2015 — his mother in June and his father, a Second World War veteran, in November. They established a trust for Mopsik so he could stay in his own home and be properly cared for.

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New Orleans resident Lawrence Mopsik, a 59-year-old with autism, was defrauded out of $1.3 million that was left to him by his parents when they died.
New Orleans resident Lawrence Mopsik, a 59-year-old with autism, was defrauded out of $1.3 million that was left to him by his parents when they died. GoFundMe

Galjour worked at the law firm overseeing the trust, and by 2016 she had misrepresented herself to Mopsik as a lawyer (she has no licence to practise law) and convinced him to make her his power of attorney.

She then began to steal his money, spending it on lavish parties, personal luxuries, a high-end Jaguar, and the like.

In 2017 she got him to sign over his house to her by telling him his neighbours were going to have him institutionalized. Galjour convinced Mopsik it was the only way to keep him out of a mental hospital.

By the time police got involved in the case, Galjour has spent all of Mopsik’s money.

Friends and neighbours have started a GoFundMe for Mopsik called “Help Lawrence Out,” a fundraiser aimed at helping the victim rebuild his life.

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It was started by Erica Dudas, a neighbour who got to know Mopsik quite well around   2017 and became his ad hoc caregiver. She knew he was struggling with something, but he wouldn’t confide in her about what was going on. She became increasingly concerned for his welfare.

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In 2019, she writes, “his mental and physical health went into major decline,” and he finally told her what was happening.

Dudas and some friends looked into the situation and quickly discovered the con that was underway. Not only had Galjour taken all of Mopsik’s money, she had embroiled him in both tax issues and credit card debt.

Friends finally got Mopsik to report what was happening to the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office.

Dudas and others trying to help have created a Special Needs trust for Mopsik to protect any assets that might be recovered. All proceeds from the GoFundMe, which has raised about half of a $75,000 goal, will be put into that trust.

Mopsik’s supporters are even putting out the call via the GoFundMe to anyone who knows Kristina Galjour and was on the receiving end of one of her lavish gifts or attended her swell parties — pointing out that it was likely Mopsik’s money being spent.

“Please help pay it back and forward if you can — Lawrence needs our help.”

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