Experienced Criminal Defense, Injury And Family Law Attorneys
Over 100 years of combined experience
Ann E. Finnell is a graduate of Duke University and the University of Florida Levin College of Law. She has been a trial lawyer for over 35 years. She has handled homicide and death penalty cases and is qualified to be court appointed on death penalty cases as first-chair counsel. Ms. Finnell also handles capital sexual battery cases and other sexual offenses, drug trafficking, sales and possession cases as well as DUI and domestic violence cases. In addition to criminal cases, Ms. Finnell handles trial litigation involving family law, child custody/support and personal injury cases.
Gonzalo Andux is a graduate of the University of Florida and the University of Florida Levin College of Law. He has been a trial lawyer for over 29 years. Mr. Andux practiced as a trial attorney at the office of the public defender in Jacksonville, Florida, for 23 years. While at the public defender’s office, Mr. Andux supervised both the special defense and homicide sections of the office. He is death penalty qualified and has tried hundreds of complex criminal cases. In addition to criminal cases, Mr. Andux handles litigation matters involving civil rights and personal injury. He is admitted to practice in both federal and state court. Mr. Andux is fluent in Spanish.
Lara Nezami received her bachelor’s degree from Vassar College in Philosophy (B.A. 1994) and her law degree from George Washington University Law School (J.D. 1997). She is admitted to practice law in Florida and California. Ms. Nezami concentrates in the areas of criminal trial litigation and family law. She represents clients in both state and federal court, where she has handled complex criminal cases, including trafficking and other drug offenses and sexual offenses. In the area of family law, she handles divorce, child support, paternity and time sharing. She also represents clients in a variety of personal injury matters.
Beth Marie Sammons is a Florida Bar Board Certified Criminal Trial Lawyer with over 10 years of experience in all areas of criminal defense, including violation of probation, DUI, drug crimes, sexual offenses, aggravated battery, arson, firearms offenses, vehicular homicide, manslaughter and murder. She also handles cases involving the death penalty. Ms. Sammons is an honors graduate of the University of Florida and Florida Coastal School of Law.
BeJae Shelton, originally from Alabama, is a graduate of Florida Coastal School of Law in Jacksonville, where she excelled, and currently practices several areas of law at Finnell, McGuinness, Nezami & Andux P.A., including divorce and family law, criminal defense and civil litigation. Before studying law, Ms. Shelton attended Agnes Scott College in Decatur, where she earned her bachelor’s degree in international relations.
Megan Cunningham is a graduate of the University of North Florida and Florida Coastal School of Law in Jacksonville, Florida. Ms. Cunningham has been a trial lawyer since 2014 and practices in the areas of family law, personal injury, probate law, and estate planning. Although Ms. Cunningham understands that people seeking an attorney in these practice areas are often going through personal challenges, she truly enjoys advocating for her clients through this difficult transition in their lives. Ms. Cunningham is also admitted to practice in the Middle District of Florida and has handled federal cases involving complex probate issues.
Vanessa Newtson has lived in Florida her entire life. She obtained her law degree and bachelor degree at the University of Florida. She has been a trial lawyer for over 13 years. She currently practices at Finnell, McGuinness, Nezami & Andux P.A. in the areas of criminal defense (state and federal) and immigration. Ms. Newtson is fluent in Spanish.
Of Counsel – Bruce P. Culbert is an experienced trial lawyer with over 18 years of experience exclusively devoted to criminal defense at both the state and federal levels. He has defended individuals charged in a wide range of criminal cases throughout North Florida, including all types of drug offenses, federal drug conspiracy charges, white collar crimes, homicide, violent crimes, sex crimes, DUI and violations of probation. Mr. Culbert is an honors graduate of Florida Coastal School of Law.
In Memoriam – Mr. McGuinness left the public defender’s office in Jacksonville, Florida, as a senior trial attorney in the homicide division after 31 years of service. During his tenure, Mr. McGuinness worked in every division handling felonies and misdemeanors, as well as mental health issues. Since 1983, he has worked primarily on capital cases, first- and second-degree murder cases, and manslaughter cases. In addition, he has been the lead counsel in many of the most high-profile cases tried in Jacksonville over the past three decades.