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The term “speaking indictment” refers to indictments that go beyond the Fed.R.Crim.P. 7(c)(1) requirement of a “plain, concise and definite written statement of the essential facts constituting the offense charged” — i.e., an indictment that does more than simply track the statutory charging language and state the who, what, when, where and the elements of the crime, the manner and means, and, for Section 371 conspiracies, overt acts. The use of speaking indictments is often justified as providing notice to defendants of allegations the absence of which might otherwise provoke pretrial motions to dismiss or for a bill of particulars. See Department of Justice (DOJ) Criminal Resource Manual at § 214 (“The [indictment] drafter must afford the defendant … a document … that is sufficiently descriptive to permit the defendant to prepare a defense, and to invoke the double jeopardy provision of the Fifth Amendment, if appropriate.”) (emphasis added). Indeed, prosecutors and courts often cite to “speaking indictments” as a reason to deny a defense motion for a bill of particulars. See, e.g., United States v. Schaefer, 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 51897 *9-12 (N.D.Ind. April 19, 2016).
By Jonathan B. New and Victoria L. Stork
In May 2018, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced a new policy to address a growing problem in white-collar criminal and civil enforcement. With increased…
By Robert J. Anello and Justin Roller
Part One of a Two-Part Article
What was once perceived as a straightforward limitation on the government’s significant enforcement powers has become obscured by statutes and court interpretations that tend to elongate the period for the government to act in ways that often are not transparent to even experienced criminal practitioners.
By Robert J. Stearn, Jr., Cory D. Kandestin and Christopher M. De Lillo
Delaware Bankruptcy Court Protects Communications with Financial Professionals Originating in Delaware
Because state law applies at the time a transaction is negotiated, the parties might assume — reasonably so — that state privilege law will govern communications with their attorneys and financial professionals. But what happens if, years later, a suit is filed in federal court and brings claims under federal law? Does state privilege law still apply?
By Sue Reisinger
Here’s a sure way to lose half your cooperation credit in a federal investigation: Let your in-house counsel advise employees not to cooperate with U.S. prosecutors.