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Crime in the Suites An Analysis of Current Issues in White Collar Defense

A Blog About Current Issues in White Collar Defense

Earlier this summer, a U.S. district judge in Denver rejected a plea bargain in a child pornography case because the defendant had agreed to waive his right to appeal. The decision sheds new light on the extent of prosecutorial power in the practice of negotiating plea agreements and the need for checks and balances to maintain a level of consistency in sentencing. The concept of appellate waiver is simple. At the sentencing phase, the defendant gives up his right to appeal, simply because the prosecutors ask him to do so. Timothy Vanderweff, the defendant in the Denver case, entered into such an agreement with the prosecutors. Facing up to 20 years in prison for the most serious of three charges against him, Vanderweff agreed to plead guilty to one of those charges and face no more than 10 years in prison. While agreeing in the deal not to ask for a sentence of less than five years, Vanderweff also agreed to waive his right to appeal, so long as the judge... Read more

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has charged an executive at Bristol-Myers Squibb with insider trading, citing his Internet searches as support that he tried to cover up his illegal acts. As a high-level executive in the treasury department at Bristol-Myers Squibb, Robert D. Ramnarine helped the company target, evaluate, and acquire other pharmaceutical companies…. Read More

The U.S. Department of Justice’s recent boasts about rigorous enforcement of the securities laws ran into a significant obstacle this month when a federal judge in Washington, D.C., dismissed part of a $50 million securities fraud case and accused DOJ prosecutors of overreaching. In an increasingly global economy, the case is a good measure of… Read More

Full Tilt Poker, PokerStars, and the U.S. Department of Justice announced today that PokerStars will acquire Full Tilt Poker’s assets in a transaction that ends the DOJ’s civil forfeiture case against Full Tilt.  Both Full Tilt and PokerStars ran online poker sites in the U.S., and in 2011 the DOJ charged both of them with… Read More

Michelle Cohen recently joined Ifrah Law as a partner. Here is an edited transcript of a recent interview with Ms. Cohen. Question:  What are some of your legal experiences and strengths that you’d like to highlight? Answer: I have many years of experience representing clients engaged in various industry sectors before state attorney generals, the… Read More

A current anti-piracy case demonstrates the U.S. government’s intent to enforce its copyright laws not just beyond national borders, but beyond the extent of logic. The U.S. Department of Justice has issued an arrest warrant and extradition order for a 24-year-old college student in England who ran a website that contained links to independent websites… Read More

On July 2, 2012, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit tackled an interesting question of statutory interpretation that centered on the precise usage by Congress of the word “knowingly” in a federal criminal law that prohibits luring people under 18 years old into prostitution. In United States v. Daniels, the appeals court… Read More

Delaware is now poised to become the second state to legalize online gaming. On Wednesday, that state’s Senate passed a bill that would legalize web table games, including poker, video lottery games, and traditional lottery games to be offered online. Democratic Governor Jack Markell supports the bill and is expected to sign it into law… Read More

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