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Inside Vegas - Steve Miller

Steve Miller is a former Las Vegas City Councilman. In 1991, the readers of the Las Vegas Review Journal voted him the "Most Effective Public Official" in Southern Nevada. Visit his website at:

Private Guardian Jared Shafer et al. Stole Cerebral Palsy Victim's Inheritance Under The Color Of Law
“The measure of a civilization is how it treats its weakest members.”

                     Jason Hanson confronts his "trustee" Elyse Tyrell about his missing inheritance
                                    (KTNV TV News screen shots, Click on images for video and text)

INSIDE VEGAS by Steve Miller
February 1, 2016

LAS VEGAS - On Friday, January 22, a dramatic showdown occurred at a meeting of the Nevada Supreme Court Guardianship Commission between 26 year old cerebral palsy victim Jason Hanson and attorney Elyse Tyrell, his court appointed trustee.

Tyrell, who also serves as a Guardianship Commissioner, artlessly takes advantage of her prestigious position by touting it on her law firm's website, this while she participated in or allowed the obvious embezzlement of Jason, one of the "wards" of the court she's been assigned to protect since 2006.

Because Jason is intellectually gifted, and is a beloved client of Opportunity Village, a charity that helps severely disabled people, the courtroom was packed with his supporters.  After Nevada Supreme Court Chief Justice James W. Hardesty called him forward to speak, Jason did not disappoint his admirers when he demanded to know what happened to his missing inheritance that Tyrell had been appointed as Trustee to administer.

After the heated confrontation and a scathing TV news report later that day, Tyrell reluctantly sent Hanson an expired check for $5,520.74 that was back dated from March 27, 2015.

After Tyrell's Federal Express package was opened by a group home employee, Jason reportedly went into shock when he saw the small amount of the enclosed Trent, Tyrell & Associates Trust Account check which comprised the entire balance remaining from his $80,000 Trust set up at Charles Schwab by his grandmother for his support, and the proceeds from the sale of a handicap accessible house owned by his late father that was meant for his son to live in for the rest of his life, but was sold at a deep discount without court authorization.

Based on his reaction to seeing that someone had stolen his entire inheritance, caretakers said they thought Jason was having a heart attack or stroke.

Tyrell provided no explanation for what happened to the over $75,000 plus interest missing from Jason's trust, the whereabouts of the proceeds from the unauthorized sale of Jason's house, and why she just now sent him a check for a fraction of his assets almost a year after it was written.

Tyrell also did not explain why the check was not drawn from Jason's trust account.  Was it so no one would know the location of the bank or the account number where his trust was transferred to, or how much interest Jason's trust had accrued?

The televised Hanson/Tyrell confrontation, and her coughing up a tiny check to try to appease him and his supporters, was inspired by what appears to be a well-orchestrated robbery of Jason's inheritance by a cartel of professional trustees and attorneys under the direction of mastermind private guardian Jared E. Shafer (left).  But this time, they may be messing with the wrong man!

It now appears clear that an incestuous group of local guardians, attorneys, and trustees were using Jason Hanson's trust fund as their personal ATM facilitated by the missing required accountings and the lackadaisical or intentional actions of several family court judges, a clear violation of Nevada law. And throughout the pilferage, at least two family court judges approved documents that allowed the theft to occur without caring one bit about the special needs man being harmed.  However, Jason's robbery is drawing extensive attention, and has put the spotlight on the type of people who function best in the dark shadows of Sin City's pseudo-elite social circle.

If my sources are correct, this may be the beginning of the end for the heartless exploiters and their Family Court collaborators.  All of them may soon be brought to justice by someone they totally underestimated, a "Rambo in a wheelchair."

I asked a forensic CPA to analyze Jason's finances. Here is his report:


I can't reconcile the estate finances from 2007 to today based on what was filed with the court.  Typical incomplete accounting.

·       Neither of Jason Hanson's Special Needs Trusts have an asset list or description of the net worth.

·       The September 2007 estate inventory is at least $189,000.  $80,000 for the grandmother's trust and $109,000 for the condo.  Savings and personal goods exist but were considered at $0 based on records. Since 2007, if the trust remained at Charles Schwab, it should have accrued another $28,000 in interest making it now worth $108,000. 

·       Starting inventory in 2007 does not list the $80,000 trust assets presented in other court documents for the Jason Hanson Special Needs Trust I.

·       June 29, 2009 order transferred the successor trustee from Jason's foster mother to Jared Shafer as she had moved from Nevada.

·       First accounting as of July 8, 2009 when the foster mother left the state and Shafer took over for her shows the 2009 initial inventory at $54,845.03, of which 75% is the home value. The $80,000 plus interest in the trust is not listed.

·       $40K of his estate is the value of the home and when sold for $47K they show $7K upside.  There is no closing statement for the sale.  The $47,000 appears to be gross proceeds as the itemized expenses were additional deductions from the sale. 

·       House was sold for $47,000 on 7/21/2010 when the market value appears to be around $109,000

·       Accounting from 2009 to 2013 for the Jason Hanson Special Needs Trust II shows an ending value of $8,900 as of October 7, 2013. The Charles Schwab trust remains unlisted.

·       Shafer's attorney Dara Goldsmith filed for fees and was awarded $3,066.88 in early 2014 this should take the balance of Jason’s trust to $5,800 as of February 2014, with no mention of the $80,000+ trust.

·       The court closed the case with an order drafted by Judge Charles Hoskin on 3/12/15 claiming any orders after September 21, 2007 are vacated due to lack of subject matter jurisdiction.  I have never seen this phrase referenced to close a case.

·       Hearing Master Jon Norheim then held a final hearing in late March 2015 reiterating the case was closed and did not require an accounting. Again, the $80,000 trust was never mentioned.

·       Everybody appears to have benefited from Jason's estate and trust but him. Interestingly it appears Elyse Tyrell became involved in 2006.  She never submitted a bill to the court...i.e. pro bono?...but there is so much money unaccounted for I would assume Tyrell was well compensated.

I also asked a veteran attorney who practices family law what Nevada Revised Statutes appear to have been violated in Jason's case:

Hi Steve: 

Below are the violations that appear obvious.  As most of these wards were placed on Medicaid and being cared for with public funds, the public should be outraged by what they are hearing.  Court insiders enjoy the estate funds, and the taxpayers pick up the costs.  Also once the funds conversion exceeds $3,500, the charge is felony financial exploitation.  Not submitting accountings, incomplete ones, or not providing receipts is a misdemeanor, but the financial fraud that occurs under the shell game is a felony. 

General functions of guardian of estate.  Protect, preserve, manage and dispose of the estate of the ward according to law and for the best interests of the ward. 

Inventory, supplemental inventory and appraisal of property of ward must be accurately reported to the court within 60 days of appointment.

Fraudulent sale of real property of ward by guardian. 

Annual financial accounting filing requirements for a guardian of the estate to the court.  In fact Jason's 2007 Special Needs Trust includes a clause on page 16 that required the trustee to schedule a hearing and present an annual accounting to the court.

Contents of account and proof of expenses; retention of receipts or vouchers for all expenditures; proving payment when receipt or voucher is lost.

Penalties defined for abuse, neglect, exploitation or isolation of older persons and vulnerable persons.

Penalties for not reporting abuse, neglect, exploitation or isolation of older person; voluntary and mandatory reports; investigation; penalty. [Effective January 1, 2014.] 

Keep in mind that Jason's case was being monitored by Family Court Judge Charles Hoskin and his appointed Hearing Master Jon Norheim from Sept. 2007 through July 2015, and not once did they require the trustees or guardians to file timely financial reports per Nevada law.

How it all began

In 2006, Jason's father and primary caregiver became gravely ill. Learning this, and seeing an opportunity to bilk an estate that at the time included the $80,000 interest bearing trust fund at Charles Schwab and a house worth at least $109,000, a far too familiar scenario began to unfold among a close group of local professionals, a scenario that has put Las Vegas on the map as a dangerous place for wealthy elderly persons to retire (see: "Las Vegas Death Watch"), or in Jason's case, to be poor, overly trusting, very innocent, physically unable to protect himself, and have assets someone else desired, i.e., easy marks!

According to Family Court records; "On the 4th day of April, 2006, The Honorable William Voy (left), appointed attorney Francis Ann Fine (left) as Guardian Ad Litem for then 17 year old cerebral palsy victim Jason Hanson."

William Voy, prior to being elected judge and serving with Fine on the Family Court bench, was Jared Shafer's attorney and defended him in over 50 cases brought by family members of Shafer's court appointed wards. Voy now serves alongside Elyse Tyrell on the Supreme Court Guardianship Commission. However, after being informed of Jason's upcoming appearance before the commission last Friday, and knowing he might be asked why he rubber stamped Francis Fine initially taking over Jason's assets, Voy was conspicuously absent from the hearing.

Who is attorney/guardian/trustee Francis Ann Fine?

According to the Dec. 1, 2000 Las Vegas Sun: "The Nevada Supreme Court Thursday found that former Family Court Judge Fran Fine of Las Vegas was guilty of 'willful misconduct' for holding improper meetings on court cases and engaging in nepotism. The court, in a unanimous decision, upheld the ruling of the state Judicial Discipline Commission to remove her from office in 1998."

On September 14, 2007, the disgraced ex-family court judge who is barred for life from serving on the bench petitioned the Clark County Family Court for permission to control Jason's $80,000 interest bearing trust account.  Fine also asked the court to approve a Supplemental Needs Trust she authored without Jason's consent or knowledge.

Another of Fine's former colleagues, Family Court Judge Charles Hoskin (left), like Judge Voy, gladly disregarded her unethical past and put his stamp of approval on the following document placing Fine in total control of Jason Hanson's person and assets by approving her plan to author and enact a new trust.  Hoskin's actions were then backed up on many occassions by his Hearing Master Jon Norheim (left). Voy, Hoskin, and Norheim's blind actions were given as if they were sharing in someone's largess!

Within days of Fine becoming then-17 year old Jason Hanson's "guardian," she authored a new trust document without his consent or knowledge that would give her complete power of attorney over his life and assets.  Then, several days after Jason turned 18 years of age and could sign legal documents, she asked the court to ratify her new trust. To enhance the Trust's appearance of legality, she rubber stamped Jason's signature on each page claiming he had reached the legal age of consent and gave his permission for her to do so.

In her document she states: "The Trustor (Jason Hanson) hereby gives, transfers, grants, sets over and transfers to Trustee (Fran Fine) the properties described in Schedule "A," TO HAVE AND TO HOLD THE SAME IN TRUST, and to manage, invest, and reinvest the same."

Here's the BIG problem!  Jason says he knew nothing of the document and never authorized Francis Fine to stamp his signature all over it.  He also has presented evidence stating that he repeatedly asked the court to provide him an attorney, and that Judge Hoskin and Hearing Master Norheim repeatedly ignored his request - a direct violation of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA).

Francis Fine presented a Notary's statement at the end of her Trust document alleging Jason signed the Trust that gave away all of his rights.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits discrimination against  people with disabilities in governmental activities. Fine's appointment as Jason's private guardian by the Family Court and the court's approval of her Trust qualify as governmental activity,  Jason's purported signing of her phony Trust at age 18 (sample of his rubber stamped signature below) without an attorney present to represent his best interests should be disqualified under ADA guidelines.

Click HERE to see the full Supplemental Needs Trust with Jason's rubber stamped signature affixed to the bottom of 21 pages that destroyed his civil rights, and the Notary affidavit that says he approved the taking.
Jason repeatedly requested he be provided a court appointed attorney and was repeatedly ignored.  This is noted several times in the court's minutes.

I believe that an innocent 18 year old man in Jason Hanson's physical condition, especially after learning he was robbed of his inheritance, has every right to claim he was forced under duress to sign the notary's document that authorized trustees and guardians to steal his entire estate (if he actually did sign the affidavit).

(Duress: "Unlawful pressure exerted upon a person to coerce that person to perform an act that he or she ordinarily would not perform.")

I believe that Francis Fine's "Supplemental Needs Trust" should immediately be rendered null and void because it was used as a tool to rob Jason's inheritance.

I also believe that Francis Fine, Jared Shafer, and Elyse Tyrell should be forced to return Jason's trust funds, pay him the scant proceeds from the unauthorized sale of his house (if the sale price was accurately reported), and that he should be awarded punitive damages, and damages for the negligent infliction of emotional distress.

Jason's case qualifies for trial in United States Federal Court based on the violation of his civil and ADA rights, especially when he requested and was denied a court appointed attorney.  It should not be tried in Nevada State Court because of Jared Shafer's political influence. He owns Signs of Nevada, LLC, the hundreds of portable A-frame signs that are coveted by most candidates running for State Court judgeships. By extreme coincidence, Elyse Tyrell is his Registered Agent, and his office manager Amy Viggiano-Deittrick is the political sign company's manager who operates the business out of Shafer's Henderson, Nevada guardianship office that uses the same P.O. Box number.

No wonder that Shafer consistently gets his way in Nevada State courts. He has the ability to donate political signs to judges!

Please note the P.O. Box number on Shafer and Bristol's business cards is the same as Signs of Nevada.  Patience Bristol is currently serving a 5 - 8 year prison sentence for the financial exploitation of Shafer's court appointed "wards."

The house


In December 2009, when Jason was twenty years old, mastermind private guardian Jared E. Shafer intruded into Jason's life and asked John Cahill, the Clark County Public Administrator, to transfer the title of Jason's 1,200 square foot wheelchair accessible condominium into Shafer's name "for the benefit of Jason Hanson."  Cahill dutifully complied, and the house was immediately sold to a Vietnamese man for a ridiculously low sum.

(Shafer helped Cahill get elected with his signs. See:

In 2009, one story condos in the Keys gated community were selling for an average of $109,000 according to the county assessor. The condo was in good shape based on Shafer's records showing he paid only $3,400 to have it cleaned and prepared for sale, though according to Jason, Shafer told him "it would cost more to have it repaired than it was worth."

According to public records, Shafer sold Jason's condo at $62,000 under market value for a quick $47,000 that promptly disappeared. Jason never received a penny from the meager proceeds.

The possible reason for the squandering of Jason's house at such a low price is theorized by another of Shafer's victims:


Everyone keeps asking, “Why do they sell the homes for so little?” They do this because of the cash transaction portion of the sale, and no one is the wiser; the PERFECT CRIME.

Back in 2008, Jared Shafer bragged that he knew how to make money off selling ward’s homes and there wasn't anything anyone could do about it. At the time, I thought this was a rather interesting comment, which actually was made as sort of a threat in reference to the sale of Marcy Dudeck’s home.  Fast forward a few years and we have come to learn that many homes, including Jason Hanson’s, Elizabeth Indig’s, Marcy Dudeck’s and countless others have all been sold for way under market value.

We believe this is how it works:

1)    Shafer (and other guardians) find a buyer (often foreigners), who deal in frequent cash transactions.

2)   A deal is made to sell the home for way below the current value, which goes on the Clark County records.

3)   Then part of the deal is the buyer gives extra cash to the guardian for the purchase.

4)   The combined amount of the “recorded” sale and the “cash on the side” still totals a sale way below the market value.

5)   The buyer gets the benefit of a cheap house with very low property taxes.

6)   The guardian gets rid of the home and pockets the extra cash; no record, the perfect crime.

7)   The buyer keeps quiet because they got the house super cheap with the combined recorded sale and the cash payout, which was illegal.

8)   The buyer also keeps quiet because the cash transaction involved unreported cash.

9)   The guardians laugh because they have unrecorded, unreported cash that they can share with the judges, who we know for a fact, favor the guardians and their attorneys in court.

Sure, maybe some homes are sold to cronies real cheap and they flip them, sell them high and split the proceeds with the guardians. But we think this partial cash payment system has potential since it's all off the record, not to mention Jared Shafer’s very own comments regarding the subject of homes.

One of Shafer's many victims, name withheld by request

The above theory was written by a family member who fought against his loved one's harsh treatment under Jared Shafer's guardianship. Too often such people have been punished for doing so (see: "Unclean Hands" Suing For Defamation").  An example was the arrest warrant issued against Becky Schultz for bringing her then-90 year old father Guadalupe Olvera to California against Shafer's orders so the WW2 veteran could spend the final five years with his loving family and old friends (see: "Escape was only option for an old soldier trapped in guardian system"). Upon Jared Shafer's orders, Judge Charles Hoskin signed the unenforceable warrant, and Mr. Olvera had to pay lawyers to get the warrant quashed in Nevada and California while Shafer paid his Las Vegas and California lawyers from Olvera's account which Shafer still controled.   When Shafer failed to have Mr. Olvera returned to Nevada, he filed a SLAPP suit (Strategic lawsuit against public participation) against Olvera's only child Becky Schultz to try to silence her. It shows that this machine can punish victims in addition to stealing their money.

Shafer giving orders to judges and court officials is not a new occurance. On Mar 18, 2014, Clark Co. Family Court Hearing Master Jon Norheim cowered when Shafer, a private citizen, ordered him to throw the public out of a hearing during the discussion of $500,000.00 missing  from one of Shafer's ward's accounts (Court Video).

In Jason Hanson's case, on October 7, 2013, a rarely provided Expense Report became part of the Family Court record. It indicates that Shafer paid his office and sign company manager Amy Viggiano Deittrick's unlicensed AVID Business Services $3,436.64 for unspecified services to benefit Jason; paid his former assistant Patience Bristol - now serving 5 - 8 years in the Nevada State Penitentiary for exploiting the elderly - $975.00 for unspecified services to benefit Jason; and paid his company Professional Fiduciary Services of Nevada (PFSN Inc.) $7,727.97 for "Real Estate related" services to sell Jason's house.  Altogether, Shafer drained Jason's account of a minimum of $12,140 for selling the house at less than half its market value and keeping 100% of the proceeds for himself.

After Jason became aware of the sale of his house without his consent, he made this video explaining how he feels:

Please take a moment to watch Jason's video to understand why so many people are so impassioned with his plight.

Keep in mind that the well organized crimes described above involved a number of persons conspiring together, a clear violation of RICO, the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act of 1970.  Hopefully, the greedy conspirators and their Family Court collaborators will be prosecuted and convicted to set an example so special needs people like Jason Hanson and other vulnerable persons can no longer be taken advantage of.


Grave Robbery Under Color Of Law!
Additional documents show Shafer is still bleeding the assets of a millionaire ward paying himself a total of $432,043.00 in fees five years after ward's death

Felony Arrest Warrant Issued For "Guardian" Jared E. Shafer's Protégé Patience Bristol
The warrant for Bristol's arrest listed fifteen felony counts including four counts of "Exploiting Old/Vulnerable Persons," eight counts of "First Degree Burglary," and three counts of "Obtaining  Money/Property/Labor Under False Pretense."

Against all odds
Daughter of WW2 vet succeeds in terminating Jared E. Shafer's Nevada guardianship and a California conservatorship dictated by Shafer

"Unclean Hands" Suing For Defamation
"Who wrote this report? Who have I bribed? What judges? WHAT BULLSHIT!" - Private Guardian Jared E. Shafer

Jared E. Shafer Loses Guardianship
Looted Senior Citizen Returns To Claim Home And Possessions After Winning Termination In A Bitter Sweet Victory
$300,000 bled from 93-year-old's trust during battle

Elder Abuse Likely - Under Color Of Law
91 year old WW2 hero pleads to be allowed to spend his final days with family in California. Private Guardian Jared E. Shafer signals his displeasure to Family Court Judge Jon Norheim who refuses to permit Olvera to leave LV. Family defies court and moves patriarch to Santa Cruz County while funds continue to be drained from his account in Nevada to pay lawyers to fight for his return.
Click here to view 2:27 sec. court record of Mr. Olvera's ignored plea

Las Vegas guardian Jared E. Shafer sued for embezzling $420,000.00 from 95 year old former ward

In 2009, Shafer and his CPA's avoided SEC criminal prosecution by returning money they fraudulently obtained from unknowing senior citizens to invest in a Ponzi scheme:

National Association To Stop Guardian Abuse

Stop Guardian Abuse Nevada

(Editor's note: Steve Miller is particularly interested in Jason Hanson's story because Steve is the President Emeritus and a founder of Opportunity Village where Jason is employed. Steve was a volunteer and served on the OV board of directors from 1967 through 1987. He was elected Vice President for six terms, and OV President for two terms until his retirement in 1987 to successfully run for public office.   In 1988, Steve was elected Chairman of the Board of Goodwill Industries of Southern Nevada where he volunteered until 1991. Altogether, Steve has proudly volunteered his time to serve those with special needs for over 25 years of his life.)

* If you would like to receive Steve's frequent E-Briefs about Las Vegas' scandals, click here: Steve Miller's Las Vegas E-Briefs

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