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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

January 2010 saw the dramatic arrests of 22 individuals in the military and law enforcement equipment industry – in several companies and at various levels of responsibility - for alleged Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations involving payments to an alleged sales agent for an unnamed African nation, later identified as Gabon. The arrests took place at a gun show in Las Vegas. The arrests, in a case that has been dubbed “the Shot Show Takedown,” the “Nevada Sting,” and the “Africa Sting,” were the result of an elaborate 2 ½- year undercover operation in which white collar prosecutors used methods such as wiretaps and undercover agents – tactics usually associated with large-scale narcotics investigations – in an FCPA case. The FBI recorded over 5,000 phone calls and literally every meeting between defendants and the undercover agents. The case represents the largest single foreign bribery investigation and prosecution brought against individuals. In June, U.S. District Judge Richard Leon in the District of Columbia heard oral arguments on defense motions to compel discovery... Read more

The Wall Street Journal has just reported that the National Security Agency is planning to deploy electronic “sensors” in the private computer networks of major companies around the nation. The idea is to detect cyber-attacks by outside forces against companies involved in critical infrastructure like electric or nuclear plants. Cyber-terrorism is a real threat, and… Read More

On July 6, 2010, the U.S. Department of Justice filed a lawsuit seeking to prohibit the enforcement of the controversial new anti-immigration law passed by the state of Arizona in April. See, for example, the helpful summary in the blog of Legal Times.  DOJ is seeking declaratory and injunctive relief to prohibit the enforcement of… Read More

The highly regarded British publication The Economist has just published an interesting article that strongly makes the case that poker is a game of skill, not a game of chance. The article notes that poker is, of course, big business these days, pointing to a consultant’s estimate that the online poker market amounts to $4.9… Read More

A recent Bloomberg News article points to a disturbing trend – a dramatic increase in ultimately unsupportable white-collar federal indictments. In recent years, a growing number of executives have been indicted for corporate crimes and then had the charges dropped. From 2006 to 2008, the most recent period available, U.S. prosecutors dismissed charges against 42… Read More

In her three-day Supreme Court confirmation hearing, nominee Elena Kagan expressed very few views on substantive issues that might give observers a clue as to how she would vote as a Justice. Criminal law and sentencing issues were no exception, as the nominee did not tip her hand much on these matters. One interesting tidbit… Read More

A recent Wall Street Journal article describing the FBI’s use against suspected financial criminals of techniques normally used to hunt terrorists shows how seriously white-collar crime is being viewed these days.  It also vindicates those who sounded warning bells after 9/11 when Americans were asked to trade civil liberties for the promise of national security. … Read More

On June 25, 2010, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its partially favorable decision in Skilling v. United States. Although the Court accepted former Enron CEO Jeff Skilling’s arguments on the reach of the “honest services” statute, it rejected Skilling’s contention that pretrial publicity and community prejudice prevented him from receiving a fair trial. Since his… Read More

Today the Supreme Court decided the key white-collar crime case of Skilling v. United States, rejecting the Justice Department’s efforts to use the well-known “honest services” statute against former Enron CEO Jeffrey Skilling. The court didn’t reverse Skilling’s conviction but sent the case back to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit to… Read More

Today, U.S. District  Judge Linda Reade in Iowa sentenced former kosher meatpacking executive Sholom Rubashkin to 27 years in a federal prison for his conviction on 86 counts of federal financial fraud charges. The prison term will be followed by five years of parole. Mr. Rubashkin will also be required to make restitution of nearly $27… Read More

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