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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

You Can’t Run From Justice
July 19, 2017

You Can’t Run From Justice

By: David S. Yellin
Just last week, a Kentucky lawyer by the name of Eric Conn was sentenced to twelve years in prison by a federal judge for bribery and theft of government money.  Though similar sentences are doled out around the country on a daily basis, this was unique because the defendant was not even in the courtroom.  The notion that a judge could sentence a defendant in absentia is unusual, but it need not give rise to fears that any one of us may be judged guilty in a secret proceeding without warning. In fact, sentencing Conn without him in the courtroom was so unusual that the judge issued a written opinion explaining why he did so.  The case started out typically enough.  Eric Conn had pleaded guilty to Social Security fraud and bribing a Social Security judge, and was set to be sentenced July 14.  As part of his plea deal, he agreed to testify against one of his co-defendants, and was allowed to remain out on bail subject to... Read more
The Lowdown on Takedowns
July 13, 2017

The Lowdown on Takedowns

By: James Trusty

Attorney General Jeff Sessions and a battery of other federal law enforcement officials today announced the “largest health care fraud takedown” in U.S. history, with 412 charged defendants, including 56 doctors, accused of defrauding taxpayers of roughly $1.3 billion.  Importantly, the takedown focused on the over-prescription of opioids, a phenomenon that has led to thousands… Read More

The “Third Party” Catch-22
June 12, 2017

The “Third Party” Catch-22

By: David S. Yellin

As the Department of Justice has been doubling down on law enforcement overreach, the Supreme Court has just decided to hear a case that may limit the use of a common tool that law enforcement uses to infringe upon the privacy rights of innocent people. The case, Carpenter v. United States, arises out of a… Read More

On May 10, 2017, Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a memorandum that expressly rescinds previous Department of Justice (DOJ) policy and directs federal prosecutors to “charge and pursue the most serious, readily provable offense” against federal defendants. The likely result of this harsher approach to the enforcement of federal drug laws is a return to… Read More

When A Threat Becomes A Crime
March 2, 2017

When A Threat Becomes A Crime

By: James Trusty

A Miami Beach man was recently accused of threatening President Trump on Twitter. He sent the threat directly to Secret Service, challenging them to stop his Inauguration Day surprise. They did, and Dominic Puopolo, who used the screen name of Lord Jesus Christ, is now in federal custody. Sending a threat to the President, to an ex-wife,… Read More

Will Clemency Continue?
February 1, 2017

Will Clemency Continue?

By: Steven Eichorn

There are many big policy changes happening in Washington these days and they receive appropriate press coverage. But, there are also many smaller changes that can have literally life changing effects on citizens, which are not generally reported in the media. One of those smaller changes is whether the Trump administration will revive a clemency program… Read More

Alexa: Play Confession
January 17, 2017

Alexa: Play Confession

By: David S. Yellin

It sits in your house, passively recording everything you say.  It knows what you like.  It knows what you listen to.  It knows what you buy.  It knows who’s in the room with you.  And now, it might tell the police all about it. “It” is the Amazon Echo, a revolution in the “internet of… Read More

The E-Rate Honey Pot
August 12, 2016

The E-Rate Honey Pot

By: Nicole Kardell

When you grant access to a $ 4 billion fund and give fund participants relative autonomy in how they use those funds, ne’er-do-wells will sniff their way to the honey pot. Keeping them out can be a challenge. So goes the story of the federally administered Schools and Libraries Program, better known as E-Rate. Established… Read More

Keep It Short and Prosper
June 9, 2016

Keep It Short and Prosper

By: Nicole Kardell

What a difference two words can make. Just ask the Center for Competitive Politics (CCP) or Americans for Prosperity (AFP), two organizations that filed separate lawsuits against the same defendant, California Attorney General Kamala Harris, over the same issue: whether Harris’s office had the right to access the organizations’ donor information. (The cases are Center… Read More

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