Monday, December 13, 2010

U.S. v. Goyal, No. 08-10436 (12-10-10) (Clifton with Wallace; concurrence by Kozinski). The 9th enters judgments of acquittal on all counts of a securities fraud and false statements convictions. The case involved the chief financial officer of Network Associates Inc (formerly McAfee) who used accounting methods the government alleged were improper. The 9th found the principles not improper, statements not false, and that no reasonable jury could have found criminal liability for accounting practices that were widespread in the industry (such as quarter ending "buy in" deals to raise revenue projections). The opinion details the various practices in the industry and how the government over-reached. Kozinski, concurring, takes the government to task for bringing the case, destroying the defendant's life, and wondering if the government had better things to do.
U.S. v. Lawrence, No. 09-30285 (12-10-10) (Canby with Thompson and Berzon). The 9th affirms an ACCA conviction, finding that a prior Washington state conviction for second degree assault in violation of Washington Revised Code 9A.36.021(1)(a) qualifies as a violent felony. The second degree assault is a violent felony because it requires an intentional assault coupled with substantial bodily harm. Although the bodily harm may be caused by recklessness, the intentional aspect of the assault seals the categorical deal. The intentional assault aspect involves active force and requires a violent act.


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