Showing posts filed under: Crime in the Suites by James Trusty

November 27, 2023

Human Trafficking Blindspot

For many years now, state and federal prosecutors have become increasingly aware of the insidious nature of sexual and labor trafficking. Victimization is cultivated by strong, threatening, and cunning traffickers. Gangs have increasingly turned to sex trafficking as a source of illicit income with low visibility—a trade that does not “bring the heat” to the… Read More

November 9, 2023

Equal Justice as Another Casualty of War

While many Americans properly focus on the carnage and chaos of two wars, there is also a more subtle war being waged by progressive mayors—and others in high positions—on fundamentally important notions like Rule of Law and Equal Justice. Last weekend over 100,000 protesters descended upon Washington, D.C. to chant and vandalize as a bewildering… Read More

October 25, 2023

Reading the Plea Leaves

Are guilty pleas in Fulton County confirming the righteousness of Fani Willis’ RICO prosecution or do they reflect an inherent frailty of the case, even in a venue where jurors largely can be expected to instinctively support a prosecution of high-profile Republicans? A close look at the recent plea agreements suggests that prosecutorial victory laps… Read More

September 13, 2023

Not a Grande Victory for DOJ

Frustrated with the massive influx of aliens into Texas, Texas Governor Greg Abbott came up with a plan that was physically simple, but legally complex: drop a 1000-foot-long buoy barrier into the middle of the Rio Grande. The four-foot spherical orange buoys were chained together and anchored to the riverbed near the town of Eagle… Read More

July 27, 2023

When Acquitted Conduct Becomes Untouchable

Alphonse Gabriel Capone was never prosecuted for murder, so there was never a jury determining whether Al was responsible for the infamous St. Valentine’s Day Massacre in which seven gang rivals were executed by Capone’s underlings. Instead, “Scarface” Capone was prosecuted and convicted for felony tax evasion offenses, for which he received 11 years in… Read More

July 6, 2023

True Threats and True Agendas

Last week’s Supreme Court opinion on the “true threats” doctrine seemingly settles a long- brewing issue in threat-based prosecutions but also reflects the anticipatory positioning of various Associate Justices on much hotter issues that may make their way to SCOTUS consideration in the near future. As such, the debate-behind-the-debate between the Court’s members is of… Read More

June 22, 2023

Robocop Finds His Man, But Man Gets Robocop’s Instruction Manual

Many years ago, a prosecutor I worked with at the time was in a fascinating murder trial, where the defense included a forensic psychiatrist opining that the defendant suffered from multiple personalities. According to this expert, one of the “inhabitants” of the defendant’s mind was a creature named Tofu the Demon Dog. On cross examination,… Read More

May 15, 2023

Playing with House Money

Just as the walls seemed to be closing in on young entrepreneur Charlie Javice, a bit of offense has left her opponent, JPMorgan, in an entirely uncomfortable position largely of its own making. Javice founded a college loan planning entity called Frank, that appeared to be doing so well that JP Morgan bought it in… Read More

July 1, 2022

More than a Mantra: Pitfalls of Excluding Time under Speedy Trial Analysis

This week the Second Circuit Court of Appeals issued a stinging reminder about the need for precision in the case of U.S. v. Pikus, No. 20-3080 (2d Cir. 2022). Aleksander Pikus was one of four defendants charged with money laundering conspiracy and related offenses for bilking Medicare and Medicaid through false billings. The scheme featured… Read More

April 21, 2022

Michigan’s High Profile Boomerang

About one month before the 2020 election, the Department of Justice proudly announced their disruption of a scheme to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer. Six men were arrested and referred to as “violent extremists.” Gov. Whitmer’s surrogates indicated that the blame was not fully on the gnarly bearded men whose pictures dominated newscasts around the… Read More