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Dalton attorney faces 1st-degree forgery charges

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An attorney who initially filed suit over fees he said were owed him now faces forgery accusations, Floyd County Superior Court records state.

Lyle Vincent Anderson, of Dalton, faces two counts of first-degree forgery. He’s accused of having a forged signature on a business card during his civil suit against Teresa Watson and Paul Ware of Rome, records state.

The charges against Anderson stem from that civil suit, which he filed in 2010 against Watson and Ware. In that suit, Anderson alleged that he was given copies of two “Internet defamation” cases to evaluate. He then performed more than 100 hours of legal work, but did not receive his full payment.

Anderson sought damages for breach of contract, among other complaints.

Anderson’s suit reached trial in June 2011. On June 20 and 30 of that year, Anderson allegedly had a business card purportedly from Ware Enterprises Inc. with Ware’s signature on it, court records state.

According to his indictment, Anderson intended to defraud when he made, altered and possessed that business card.

Jurors heard evidence June 30, 2011, in the trial. On that day, Ware’s attorney asked a forensic document handwriting examiner about the signature. The examiner, Steven Drexler, said Ware’s signature was a forgery, court transcripts state.

Records show that jurors sided with the defendants. They also ordered that Ware’s attorney receive more than $30,000 as his payment for defending Ware.

Watson defended herself, records state.

Anderson appealed, though the Georgia Court of Appeals sided against him, court documents state.

A grand jury indicted Anderson Dec. 20 on the forgery counts. A judge issued an arrest warrant that day for Anderson.

According to sheriff’s spokesman Jerry Duke, Anderson had not been arrested as of Monday evening.