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HOUSTON -- A judge has fined a Houston man more than $165,000 -- plus $35,000 in legal fees -- for practicing law without a license.

Harry Patel owned and operated a company called U.S. Immigration Counseling Services Inc.

In 2002, a Harris County judge determined Patel was practicing law and providing legal servicesillegally and ordered him to stop. But for eight years, Patel continued his illegal activities, said Denis Ducran, who represented the state's Unauthorized Practice of Law Committee (UPLC) in the contempt case.

After hearing all the evidence, a jury found Patel guilty of violating the judge's orders and practicing law 1,023 times.


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