Aliza Sherman at center of $2 million lawsuit

CLEVELAND -- Aliza Sherman's murder is still unsolved, and now her name is at the center of a $2 million lawsuit.

Sanford Sherman, Aliza's estranged husband, is accused of theft and identity fraud in a civil suit filed this week by Jennifer Sherman on behalf of her mother's estate.

Jennifer Sherman's attorney, Jason Winter, told WKYC he would love to get the entire truth out in the open, but it wouldn't be fair to pending litigation. Jennifer Sherman herself did not comment.

The details filed in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court show a question of $2 million that went missing years before Aliza's murder.

Sanford and Aliza Sherman married in 1982, and Aliza filed for divorce in 2011.

After two years of arguments, a trial was set for March 26, 2013. Aliza died two days earlier, stabbed to death outside her attorney's office on Erieview Plaza.

Cleveland police say the only suspect is a masked figure seen on surveillance video running from the scene. Experts cannot determine from the tape if the suspect is even a man or a woman.

The lawsuit accuses Sanford Sherman of forging documents to make off with money in an account in Aliza Sherman's name.

The documents accuse Sherman of making a number of secret deposits from May 2000 to 2010 totaling more than $2 million.

From 2004 to 2010, the documents say he depleted the account, down to zero, using a forged power of attorney.

The suit is also filed against five John Does, allowing lawyers to include anyone else who might have been involved.

The estate wants to recover damages, as well as attorney fees and other costs. The lawsuit asks for more information, documents and even a deposition of Sanford Sherman, set for July 11.

Cleveland police Deputy Chief Ed Tomba told WKYC in an email that detectives are aware of the civil suit, but it has no bearing on the ongoing criminal case. Tomba confirmed police are still interested in interviewing Sanford Sherman, who has retained prominent criminal defense attorney Niki Schwartz.

Schwartz did not return calls for comment.


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