February 8, 2019

Is Trump target of a RICO probe?

Barbara McQuade, Daily Beast -It is impossible to know exactly what the federal prosecutors in Manhattan are investigating, but the wide array of crimes brings to mind a case that was prosecuted in Detroit when I served as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan. Former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick and several of his associates were convicted under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, also known as RICO.

RICO is a statute that was passed in 1970 to prosecute organized crime. Until then, mob bosses would often insulate themselves from criminal exposure by directing underlings to commit crimes. In response, Congress enacted RICO, which, among other things, makes it a crime for any person associated with an enterprise to participate, directly or indirectly, in the conduct of the enterprise’s affairs through a pattern of racketeering activity. Pattern of racketeering activity is defined as two or more acts from a list of criminal offenses, such as mail fraud, wire fraud, and money laundering, some of the very same crimes that SDNY prosecutors are reportedly now investigating. The penalties for violating RICO are heavy–up to 20 years in prison and forfeiture of the proceeds of the racketeering activity.

1 comment:

Albert Krauss said...

Acronyms (like RICO) easily lose their identity in the ongoing torrent of quick comments. Thanks for this reminder and definition, for your readers. Like the "You are not alone" message delivered to political prisoners in bad places by Amnesty International, this message is similar. "you are not alone in the vast internet desert/swamp", whichever fits.