Barry Pollack Comments on Viability of Criminal Fraud Charges in N.J. Gov. Christie's Bridge Scandal in Law360

"US Probe Into NJ Bridge Debacle Faces Tough Odds"
01.09.14Barry Pollack commented on federal prosecutors' ability to establish criminal charges against the individuals involved in the politically motivated lane closures of the George Washington Bridge last September, who are affiliated with N.J. Gov. Chris Christie. Due to the U.S. Supreme Court's 2010 decision in Skilling v. U.S., which found that honest services fraud is limited to schemes involving bribery or kickbacks, the conduct thus far fails to meet the statute's scope, Pollack said. "A few years ago, prosecutors had fallen in love with that honest services provision of mail fraud, and it was really used for just this sort of occasion -- bad behavior that may not have involved a bribe or some other financial incentive," he said, adding that a prosecutor may try to find a creative way around the Court's decision, but probably shouldn't. "Not every time a government official acts in a way that we dislike has a federal crime been committed," Pollack said.
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