Inventions have changed how we view things. Imaging devices like the x-ray and CT scan have changed how we view the practice of medicine. The Internet has changed how we communicate. Now, a new form of technology may lead to a shift in how we view money: the Bitcoin.
Last time, we began looking at the case of Reggie Fullwood, who has been charged with mail and wire fraud offenses which could result in up to 20 years of prison. As we noted, Fullwood has pleaded not guilty to the charges, though it remains to be seen how he will defend himself.
Lawmakers in the Florida House of Representatives are reportedly working on passing a bill that would address weaknesses in the current law addressing unemployment compensation fraud. The bill, which has been unanimously passed by the House Economic Development and Tourism Subcommittee, imposes stricter penalties for violations.
Last time, we mentioned a bill currently under consideration by Florida lawmakers which would lower the mens rea, or criminal intent, requirement in public corruption cases. Intent is an important issue in criminal cases, and prosecutors would, of course, naturally favor changes that would lower the bar in terms of proving criminal intent.
The fantasy sports industry has expanded rapidly over the past several years, with sites like DraftKings and FanDuel drawing in millions of users year round. For some it is a casual hobby, while for others it is a substantial source of income. However, as we discuss in our new white paper, it may also be illegal.
We’ve been discussing the issue of fraud in our last several posts, particularly the issue of intent in health care fraud cases. We left off discussing the Anti-Kickback Statute, and noted that when prosecutors are not able to provide sufficient evidence to satisfy the intent requirement under the statute, they are not able to obtain a fraud conviction.
Tampa readers may have seen in the news that a Florida man who formerly worked at Florida State University as a Finance Professor has been charged by a federal grand jury with embezzlement. According to the indictment, the man stole over $650,000 from funds held by the university during his time as a professor there. The allegations are clearly serious, particularly given the fact that university professors are expected not only to be knowledgeable in their subjects, but to model the ethical standards of their area of profession.
charges in connection with his friendship with Florida eye surgeon Salomon Melgen. Earlier this week, the Senator was indicted on charges of conspiracy, fraud, making false statements on government documents and eight counts of bribery, each of which carries a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison. Menendez is the first senator to be charged with bribery since 1980.
In our last couple posts, we’ve been exploring the topic of downward departures in the context of the Federal Sentencing Guidelines. We’ve already discussed the basic approach used by the guidelines in determining a defendant’s sentencing range for fraud-related offenses. Here we want to discuss what the guidelines say on the topic of downward departures, both in general and with respect to crimes of fraud.
In our previous post, we began looking at the issue of departures from federal sentencing guidelines. Departures, as we noted, can be either downward or upward depending on the circumstances. Downward departures, to be sure, present an opportunity for advocacy in criminal defense, but obtaining them is not a free-for-all. There are guidelines regarding when a departure may be appropriate, and prosecutors often ask for upward departures when they are able to do so. Here we’ll take a brief look at the issue.