High Court Ready To Rein In Honest Services Fraud

Law360, New York (October 26, 2009, 5:51 PM EDT) -- It has bitten the likes of one-time Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, media magnate Conrad Black, Senate Majority Leader Joseph Bruno and former Enron Corp. CEO Jeffrey Skilling. Now the honest services provision of the mail fraud statute, that long-held weapon of prosecutors, looks set to finally lose its teeth.

Just what conduct is outlawed under the provision — which explicitly prohibits any scheme or artifice to deprive another of the intangible right to “honest services” — has been guessed at by the federal appeals courts for...
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