High Court Rules Legal Advice Can't Be Extorted

Law360, New York (June 26, 2013, 11:49 AM EDT) -- The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that forcing a person to recommend that his employer approve an investment did not constitute extortion under the Hobbs Act, reversing the conviction of a technology investment adviser accused of extorting the New York state comptroller's general counsel.

In a unanimous ruling, the court held that extorted property must be “transferable,” meaning it must be capable of passing from one person to another. A person’s right to freely make a legal or investment recommendation cannot be “obtained” by another person...
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