Andrew Freund

The Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission of the Supreme Court of Illinois announced last week that it had moved formally to disbar a Riverside-based attorney who had represented a real estate trust that owns a local apartment building.

On Jan. 21, the ARDC announced Andrew T. Freund, licensed as an attorney since 1984, had been disbarred after being convicted last year of involuntary manslaughter, aggravated battery of a child and concealment of a homicidal death.

In September, the 62-year-old Freund, who lived in northwest suburban Crystal Lake, was sentenced to 30 years in prison for killing his 5-year-old son, Andrew “A.J.” Freund, and burying him in a shallow grave in Woodstock.

Freund’s wife, JoAnn Cunningham, 37, was convicted of murder and sentenced last July to 35 years in prison. The two reported their son missing on April 18, 2019. Police found the boy’s remains a week later a few miles from his home.

Although he lived in the northwest suburbs, Freund’s professional address was listed at 24 East Ave. in downtown Riverside, a storefront in the Tower Apartments. Freund at the time served as legal counsel for the real estate trust that owns the apartment building.

When he was arrested for killing his son in April 2019, Freund was representing the real estate trust in a premises liability lawsuit filed in 2018 after a resident of the building fell off a ladder to his death while painting a rear stairwell at the Tower Apartments.

Ronald Kafka, who has a long association with the property but who has consistently denied he is its owner, was named in the lawsuit as a defendant along with Carol Kafka, the Carol Kafka Revocable Trust, Property Rental Inc., Reliable Management and three real estate trusts. 

The lawsuit claimed Kafka had hired 70-year-old Randall Schirmer to do the paint job and also identified Kafka as the person who “owned, operated, managed, maintained and controlled” the Tower Apartments.

Last June the defendants in that case agreed to pay Schirmer’s family $950,000 to settle the lawsuit. In settling the case, none of the defendants admitted any liability but they shared the cost.

ARDC had suspended Freund’s law license on July 16, 2019 after he was charged in connection with his son’s death.