Category Archives: Obstruction

Fight the Power, Part IV: The Government Backs Off Absurd Claims of “Witness Tampering”

A defendant has a constitutional right to prepare a defense to criminal charges. In a white-collar case, contacting potential witnesses is as important as reviewing the document trail. Why does the government feel threatened when we do our jobs? I … Continue reading

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Ninth Circuit Sets Some Practical Limits on Obstruction of Justice and Witness Tampering Charges

There has been a lot of talk in the media recently about obstruction of justice. Obstruction of justice is a fascinating topic, to be sure. But whether the President of the United States obstructed justice when he fired the Director … Continue reading

Posted in Appeal, Obstruction, Trade Secrets, Witness tampering | Leave a comment

Upjohn Warnings from Both Sides of the Table

I recently participated on a panel at the excellent NACDL White Collar Defense College with Ellen Brotman, Preston Pugh, Brian Bieber and Cynthia Orr. The College aims to teach lawyers how to handle white-collar cases from start to finish. We … Continue reading

Posted in Attorney client privilege, internal investigation, Obstruction | 2 Comments

There’s a New Sheriff in Town: Eleventh Circuit Wrestles with Public Bribery Statute—Again

I previously posted about an interesting case involving the Eleventh Circuit’s interpretation of one of the public bribery statutes, 18 U.S.C. § 666. Well, the Eleventh Circuit is at it again. This time, it didn’t turn out as well for … Continue reading

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The Deleted Email Folder “Is Not Like a Trash Can”: Ninth Circuit Affirms Acquittal in Obstruction Case

One of the first things I tell a potential client in a criminal case is not to delete anything from his computer. I explain that DOJ will turn deleting an email or two into an obstruction of justice charge. The … Continue reading

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Absurd Obstruction Charge Reversed–But the Government Won’t Give Up

Sometimes, the good guys win. The Deepwater Horizon oil spill was a tragedy. The explosion was deadly and the resulting environmental harm was devastating. The government’s response was typical: let’s find some people to prosecute. One of the unlucky targets … Continue reading

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Tom Brady Is Lucky It Was Only an NFL Investigation

Deflategate is a riveting story. In this corner: a star quarterback who may have cheated in a playoff game. In the other corner: a despised NFL commissioner flexing his disciplinary muscle by upholding the QB’s four-game suspension. What’s turned out … Continue reading

Posted in Obstruction, Uncategorized | Tagged | 2 Comments

The Opening Statement for this Prosecution Writes Itself: The Indictment of Massey Energy CEO

As a general rule, the government does not indict CEOs of big companies. No one really wants to say that out loud—at least on the government’s side of the aisle—but it’s true. It is usually difficult for the government to … Continue reading

Posted in Conspiracy, Obstruction, Securities fraud, Uncategorized | Tagged | 2 Comments

A Trial Victory in a Federal White-Collar Case!

It’s a dreary Monday morning in D.C., but I saw this article on Law360 (subscription required, sorry) that brought a little cheer to the day. Last Thursday, a jury in Fort Myers, Florida, acquitted the former division president of Health … Continue reading

Posted in Acquittal After Jury Trial, Health care fraud, Obstruction | Leave a comment

A Look-Back Review Gone Wrong – SEC Charges Wells Fargo Compliance Consultant with Altering Records Related to Insider Trading

The SEC has charged Judy Wolf, a former compliance consultant for Wells Fargo Advisors, with falsifying records that were submitted to the SEC during the investigation of a registered Wells Fargo representative. Ms. Wolf allegedly falsified her internal investigation logs … Continue reading

Posted in Insider Trading, Obstruction, SEC Investigation | Tagged | Leave a comment