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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

Death by a Thousand Cuts
May 8, 2020

Death by a Thousand Cuts

By: James Trusty
When legal scholars look back at the failed Flynn prosecution, they will not be able to pin the dismissal on a single deficiency or legal principle, but if they are fair they will recognize a small case that was plagued with innumerable flaws. The DOJ Motion to Dismiss, filed in the rarified air of a case where the guilty plea already took place, spends a fair amount of time discussing the crime’s legal element of “materiality.”  For a false statement to be deemed material, it has to have the potential to negatively affect a federal investigation. The Motion discusses the fact that the FBI agents actually knew the answers to their questions, and how the Flynn investigation should have effectively ended before the ambush that seemed to have netted General Flynn. Materiality, however, is typically a pretty low bar to clear for the government—the case law has found false statements to be material even if corrected by the suspect in short order, and even when the investigators knew full well... Read more
Videoconferencing to the Rescue
April 1, 2020

Videoconferencing to the Rescue

By: James Trusty

While the recent passage of the “Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (“CARES”) Act is receiving tremendous attention because of its price tag, strategies to keep businesses and families afloat, and its hidden gems for beneficiaries like the Kennedy Center, it also has a component that is important for federal practitioners who handle criminal matters… Read More

How White Hats Get Dirty
March 19, 2020

How White Hats Get Dirty

By: James Trusty

Historically, undercover operations by law enforcement would run into problematic “loyalty tests,” designed to make sure that the criminal conspirators could trust the “new guy.” Biker gangs would ask this “pledge” to beat someone up or take drugs, knowing law enforcement agencies would likely not let that happen, even in an undercover capacity. Prostitution stings… Read More

A Tiny Crack in the Wall?
December 10, 2019

A Tiny Crack in the Wall?

By: James Trusty

Federal sentencing proceedings have a long and rich history of including every speck of good and bad that a defendant brings to the table. Unlike the trial itself, there are no Rules of Evidence that apply to keep the factfinder from considering unreliable or unproven information. The judge need only find facts by a preponderance… Read More

Celebrating 10 Years by Strategizing with the Best
August 6, 2019

Celebrating 10 Years by Strategizing with the Best

By: Nicole Kardell

How do you celebrate ten years of defending people against a criminal justice system that plays with a stacked deck? Bring in a renowned journalist and legal commentator to talk problems and solutions. Emily Bazelon, a staff writer at New York Times Magazine and the Truman Capote Fellow for Creative Writing and Law at Yale… Read More

On Monday, the Supreme Court handed down Gamble v. United States, No. 17-646, an interesting decision on Double Jeopardy with practical and predictive ramifications beyond its limited facts. Terance Martez Gamble was caught possessing a loaded handgun in Mobile, Alabama, after previously having been convicted for robbery. He pleaded guilty and received one year in… Read More

The Cliffhanger – Paul Manafort’s Sentencing Drama
February 14, 2019

The Cliffhanger – Paul Manafort’s Sentencing Drama

By: James Trusty

A hit man walks into a restaurant where Tony Soprano and his family are eating dinner while the jukebox blares a Journey song. The last show of the highly successful series ends with an abrupt cut to black before the audience knows the fate of Tony and his family. The end of The Sopranos series… Read More

New York AG Puts Crypto Exchanges in the Crosshairs
December 28, 2018

New York AG Puts Crypto Exchanges in the Crosshairs

By: George Calhoun

Following on the heels of the SEC’s announcement of subpoenas to crypto exchanges and token issuers, yesterday New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced “the Virtual Markets Integrity Initiative,” which he described as “a fact-finding inquiry into the policies and practices of platforms used by consumers to trade virtual or ‘crypto’ currencies like bitcoin and… Read More

For many years, it has been the federal government, with its multitude of prosecutorial and regulatory arms, that has been able to throw its policing weight around, causing business owners to snap to attention with a crisp salute.  But as the traditional business model has morphed into clouds of technology-driven, international and multinational enterprises, this… Read More