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If you are arrested in South Florida, you may feel helpless and confused about the charges you face. Depending on the alleged crime, you could face life-altering consequences, ranging from losing your career to severing years in prison. You could be labeled a criminal, and a conviction could haunt you.

You have a right to be represented. Before you speak with law enforcement officers, contact a skilled and experienced criminal defense attorney to help defend your rights and guide you through the legal process. Fort Lauderdale criminal defense firm Meltzer & Bell can fight for you and give you the hard-hitting defense you deserve.

Meltzer & Bell is a criminal defense firm in Fort Lauderdale founded by a former Broward County prosecutor and a former Broward County public defender. Meltzer & Bell handles all state and federal criminal charges throughout Broward County, including Fort Lauderdale, Pembroke Pines, Miramar, Coral Springs, Hollywood, Pompano Beach, Plantation, Davie, Sunrise, Weston, and Wilton Manors.

Meltzer and Bell collectively have taken more than 400 cases to jury trial through verdict. The attorneys have extensive experience in nearly all complex criminal litigation cases including homicide cases, sexual battery, economic crimes such as money laundering and white-collar crimes, violent crimes, drug crimes, domestic violence, DUI cases, and the specific defenses employed when dealing with breath, blood and urine tests, plus other DUI matters in South Florida. Meltzer & Bell is well versed in all criminal defense matters and is ready to help you with your case.

Attorney Steven Bell

Steven Bell is a former Broward County public defender who worked in the felony division before leading the juvenile division. He also has years of experience practicing privately in South Florida. Bell graduated from the University of Florida in 2001 with a bachelor’s degree in advertising, and he earned his Juris doctor from Nova Southeastern University’s Sheppard Broad Law Center in 2004.

Read more about Attorney Steven Bell.

Attorney Larry Meltzer

Lawrence Meltzer is a former Broward County prosecutor who defends clients in Fort Lauderdale and surrounding areas of Broward County. Meltzer earned his bachelor’s degree from American University and his Juris doctor from Nova Southeastern University’s Sheppard Broad Law Center. He spent four years working in the Broward County State Attorney’s Office before moving into private criminal defense practice.

Read more about Attorney Lawrence Meltzer.

Attorney Ari Goldgerg

Ari Goldberg had been an Assistant State Attorney in Palm Beach for three and half years before joining Meltzer & Bell, P.A. Ari graduated from Florida International University College of Law in Miami in 2009 with his Juris Doctorate. Ari was first assigned to the County Court Trial Division while he was at the State Attorney’s Office where he served as the Lead Attorney. His responsibilities included supervising other ASA’s, handling hundreds of cases, and making filing decisions on all DUI’s assigned to his division.

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Attorney Stephan Dobrinsky

Stephan Dobrinsky was born and raised in South Florida. For his undergraduate studies, he attended the University of Maryland where he majored in Philosophy. In 2011, he enrolled at the Levin College of Law at the University of Florida. Prior to joining Meltzer & Bell, P.A., Stephan worked as an Assistant Public Defender in Broward County for over three years, dedicating himself to the defense of indigent people charged with crimes.

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Associate Attorney David Goudreau

David Goudreau is a Partner at Meltzer & Bell, P.A. He studied Criminology at Florida State University, earning cum laude honors. It was there that he first discovered his passion for the law, working right alongside a local attorney who would later be appointed to the Federal Judiciary.

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Associate Attorney Brandon Dinetz

Brandon Dinetz joins Meltzer & Bell, P.A. as an associate after working for four years as an Assistant State Attorney in Palm Beach County. While at the State Attorney’s Office, he was assigned to the County Court Trial Division. In this role, he prosecuted over 3,100 criminal cases, including DUI’s, thefts, batteries, firearm charges, drug offenses, and numerous traffic offenses.

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Justin Duran

Justin Duran was born and raised in Miami, Florida. He attended the University of South Florida where he majored in Criminology and minored in History. He graduated summa cum laude in 2015. Immediately thereafter, he began his legal studies at Florida International University College of Law. It was there that Justin began training to become a trial attorney. He received the highest honor, the Book Award, in his Trial Advocacy and Advanced Trial Advocacy classes. He joined the FIU Law Trial Team, where he immediately became a team captain and competed in statewide competitions. In November of 2017, he won first place at the Honorable E. Earle Zehmer Memorial Mock Trial Competition located in Orlando, Florida. As a result of his achievements, Justin was awarded a Trial Advocacy Scholarship by the Miami Chapter of the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers in May of 2018. He then graduated FIU Law with cum laude honors.

Read more about Justin Duran.


Whitney Duteau born and raised in Tampa, Florida. She completed her Bachelor’s Degree at the University of Central Florida in Orlando. Upon graduating in 2010 Whitney began to pursue her law degree at Florida Coastal School Of Law in Jacksonville. She graduated in 2013 with Pro Bono honors for her outstanding dedication to the community. Prior to joining the Meltzer & Bell, P.A. family, Whitney worked as an Assistant Public Defender in the 19th Judicial Circuit (St. Lucie, Martin, Okeechobee, and Indian River counties) for 7 years. During her time at the Public Defender’s office, Whitney provided legal representation to those charged with misdemeanors and felonies.

Read more about Whitney Duteau.

Paul Bernard

Paul Bernard is committed to serving his clients by treating them with dignity and respect, by humanizing them to the court and to opposing counsel, and by expeditiously and aggressively assisting them by protecting their legal, civil, and human rights through what is sometimes a daunting and complex legal system.

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Noelia Rodriguez

Noelia Rodriguez has been with Meltzer and Bell for almost 2 years and is the direct Legal Assistant to Mr. David Goudreau, Esq. She is the firm’s liaison to both Misdemeanor Probation and DUI Schools in Palm Beach County. Prior to that, she was with Pride Integrated Services for 22 years, where she worked with Misdemeanor Probation Department and the DUI School.

Read more about Noelia Rodriguez.

Howard J. Schumacher serves Of Counsel at Meltzer & Bell, P.A., where is defends people in South Florida against criminal charges. He has practiced in Florida for more than 25 years. His work has included extensive practice in federal appeals, especially the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, which includes Florida.
Read more about Howard J. Schumacher

Associate Attorney Carolina King

Carolina King is an Legal Assistant Palm Beach County Division Meltzer & Bell, P.A. She joined the firm in 2017 after having been employed with Olea and Porcella, P.A. since 2008. In addition to her responsibilities as direct assistant to Mr. Goldberg, Carolina manages the Traffic Ticket Defense Department.

Read more about Carolina King.

Anthony Carrera

Anthony Carrera has been a Paralegal at the firm’s Palm Beach County Division, Meltzer & Bell, P.A., for over 4 years. Prior to joining Meltzer & Bell, P.A., Mr. Carrera worked for the Law Offices of Olea and Porcella, P.A. Anthony joined Meltzer and Bell P.A. team in January 2017. HE works as a Legal Assistant within the field of traffic tickets, mailing, and various administrative duties.

Read more about Anthony Carrera.

Howard Schumacher serves as Of Counsel at Meltzer & Bell where he defends people in South Florida against criminal charges. He has practiced law in Florida for more than 25 years. His work has included extensive practice in federal appeals, especially the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, which includes Florida.

Read more about Howard Schumacher.

Maribel Cancino

Maribel Cancino is the head Legal Assistant for the Broward & Miami-Dade County offices. Prior to this role, she spent 7 years as the direct legal assistant for the firm’s managing partner, Steven Bell. Maribel has extensive experience in the legal field, dating back to her role at the DUI Department of Pride Integrated Services in 2000.

Read more about Maribel Cancino.

Beverly Baitsholts

Beverly Baitsholts is a full-time legal assistant responsible for running our treasure coast divisions with attorneys Whitney Duteau, Esq. and Paul Bernard, Esq. She brings a wealth of knowledge to our treasure coast office and is a vital part of our team.

Read more about Beverly Baitsholts.

Giselle Scafordi

Giselle Scafordi joined the Meltzer & Bell, P.A. team this year as an administrative assistant. She is bilingual and helps run the day to day operations in the Palm Beach Division of the firm.

Read more about Giselle Scafordi.

Attorneys at Meltzer & Bell are available 24 hours per day, seven days per week. Unlike other firms, you can have real-time access to the firm’s partners, including nights, weekdays and holidays. The attorneys are there to serve the clients at all times because arrests can happen at any moment.

If you have been arrested and accused of a crime in Broward County or the surrounding areas, contact Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorneys at Meltzer & Bell Call (954) 765-6585 to schedule a free consultation with one of the attorneys.

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