PROSECUTE PRES. DONALD J. TRUMP FOR VIOLATION OF THE LOGAN
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The Logan Act (1 Stat. 613, 18 U.S.C. § 953, enacted January 30, 1799 ) is a United States federal law that forbids unauthorized citizens from negotiating with foreign governments having a dispute with the U.S. It was intended to prevent the undermining of the government's position.
Since that time, the law has been expanded and used to go after a variety of organizations, from corrupt police departments to motorcycle gangs. RICO law should not be thought of as a way to punish the commission of an isolated criminal act. Rather, the law establishes severe consequences for those who engage in a pattern of wrongdoing as a member of a criminal enterprise.
Title 18, Section 1961 of the United States Code sets forth a long list of racketeering activities, the repeated commission of which can form the basis of a RICO Act claim. These underlying federal and state offenses exist independently of the act, and include the crimes of homicide, kidnapping, extortion, and witness tampering. Racketeering activities also include property crimes such as robbery and arson. A number of financial crimes are also listed, such as money laundering, counterfeiting, securities violations, as well as mail and wire fraud.
Penalties in Criminal Court
The RICO Act provides both criminal and civil penalties. This means claims can be brought by prosecutors on behalf of the government, or by private individuals. In criminal prosecutions, the jury must be convinced of the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. This is the highest burden of proof that exists in the American legal system. Violations are punishable by up to 20 years in prison. The sentence can be increased to life in prison if authorized by the underlying crime. Offenders also face a fine of either $250,000, or double the amount of the proceeds earned from the activity.
As a tool for dismantling criminal enterprises, following a conviction the government is automatically given a forfeiture of all of the defendant’s interest in the organization. So not only do defendants lose all their money and property that can be traced back to the criminal conduct, but the organization itself can be severely crippled. And the government need not wait until after a guilty verdict, when the property expected to become subject to forfeiture may be difficult to locate. The rules of procedure in a RICO prosecution allow the government to freeze the defendant’s assets before the case even goes to trial.
Civil Remedies for Victims
For civil claims brought by private parties who have been victimized by a criminal organization, the burden of proof is less onerous than in criminal court. A preponderance of the evidence standard applies. This means the jury must find that it is at least slightly more likely than not that the racketeering activities did in fact happen as alleged. Despite the lower burden of proof, civil RICO lawsuits are difficult and expense for individuals to pursue. Those who win are rewarded, however. Successful plaintiffs can recover “treble damages,” or in other words, three times the amount of money they lost due to the defendant’s actions.
Specific Elements of a RICO Claim
Liability for a RICO violation requires that a person be involved in an enterprise that operates through a pattern of racketeering activity. This raises a couple of issues that will prove important to anyone defending or pursuing a RICO case. First, a controversy may arise as to what will satisfy the element requiring an enterprise. Corporations, partnerships, and other businesses will surely qualify as enterprises. But what about informal organizations, like street gangs?
The Supreme Court considered the issue, and determined that an enterprise can be any group with members who are associated in a relationship in order to achieve a common purpose, provided the relationship lasts long enough to allow them to pursue that purpose. In the terminology of RICO law, such groups are known as “association-in-fact” enterprises.
Another common issue concerns the element requiring a pattern of racketeering activity. The RICO Act itself defines the term pattern as two or more acts of racketeering activity within a 10-year period. However, the Supreme Court has weighed in on this issue as well. According to the Court, to qualify as a pattern, the criminal activities must be related and continuous. Relatedness will be established if the crimes have similar characteristics such as the same perpetrators, victims, and methods of commission. Continuity will be established if the crimes occurred over a substantial period of time. Some courts have interpreted this to mean at least one year.
The Importance of Legal Representation
Whether you are interested in filing a claim against a criminal enterprise, or need help defending a case brought against you, you will need experienced legal representation. A skilled attorney will use the complex provisions of the RICO Act to your benefit. To learn more, contact a RICO lawyer today.
The FBI is dedicated to eliminating transnational organized crime groups that pose the greatest threat to the national and economic security of the United States. The Bureau has found that even if key individuals in an organization are removed, the depth and financial strength of the organization often allow it to continue, so the FBI targets entire organizations responsible for a variety of criminal activities. The Bureau draws upon the experience, training, and proficiency of its agents; its partnerships within the intelligence and law enforcement communities; and its worldwide presence, using sustained, coordinated investigations and the criminal and civil provisions of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.
Today's organized crime threat is broader and more complex than ever, and includes:
Russian mobsters who fled to the U.S. in the wake of the Soviet Union’s collapse;
Groups from African countries like Nigeria that engage in drug trafficking and financial scams;
Chinese tongs, Japanese Boryokudan, and other Asian crime rings; and
Enterprises based in Eastern European nations like Hungary and Romania.
All of these groups have a presence in the U.S. or are targeting our citizens from afar—using the Internet and other technologies of our global age. And more and more, they are becoming partners in crime, realizing they have more to gain from cooperating than competing.
The impact of transnational organized crime isn’t easily measured, but we know it’s significant. Organized crime rings manipulate and monopolize financial markets, traditional institutions like labor unions, and legitimate industries like construction and trash hauling. They bring drugs into our cities and raise the level of violence in our communities by buying off corrupt officials and using graft, extortion, intimidation, and murder to maintain their operations. Their underground businesses—including prostitution and human trafficking—sow misery nationally and globally. They also con us out of millions each year through various stock frauds and financial scams. The economic impact alone is staggering; it is estimated that global organized crime reaps illegal profits of around $1 trillion per year.
To combat the ongoing threat posed by these groups, we have a long-established—yet constantly evolving—organized crime program dedicated to eliminating the criminal enterprises that pose the greatest threat to America. Dismantling and disrupting major international and national organized criminal enterprises is a longstanding area of FBI expertise. We have the experience and training to target criminal enterprises, the broad statutory jurisdictions to bring down entire organizations rather than just individuals, and a presence throughout the nation and the world. We also participate in joint task forces with other federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies that allow us to pool resources of various agencies, taking advantage of the efficiencies and expertise of each of these agencies. And we partner with agencies around the world.
Glossary of Terms
The FBI defines a criminal enterprise as a group of individuals with an identified hierarchy, or comparable structure, engaged in significant criminal activity.
These organizations often engage in multiple criminal activities and have extensive supporting networks. The terms Organized Crime and Criminal Enterprise are similar and often used synonymously. However, various federal criminal statutes specifically define the elements of an enterprise that need to be proven in order to convict individuals or groups of individuals under those statutes.
The Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) statute, or Title 18 of the United States Code, Section 1961(4), defines an enterprise as "any individual, partnership, corporation, association, or other legal entity, and any union or group of individuals associated in fact although not a legal entity."
The Continuing Criminal Enterprise statute, or Title 21 of the United States Code, Section 848(c)(2), defines a criminal enterprise as any group of six or more people, where one of the six occupies a position of organizer, a supervisory position, or any other position of management with respect to the other five, and which generates substantial income or resources, and is engaged in a continuing series of violations of subchapters I and II of Chapter 13 of Title 21 of the United States Code.
The FBI defines organized crime as any group having some manner of a formalized structure and whose primary objective is to obtain money through illegal activities.
Such groups maintain their position through the use of actual or threatened violence, corrupt public officials, graft, or extortion, and generally have a significant impact on the people in their locales, region, or the country as a whole.
Significant Racketeering Activity
The FBI defines significant racketeering activities as those predicate criminal acts that are chargeable under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations statute. These are found in Title 18 of the United States Code, Section 1961 (1) and include the following federal crimes:
Embezzlement of Union Funds
Obstruction of Justice
Murder for Hire
Sexual Exploitation of Children
Trafficking in Counterfeit Goods
Theft from Interstate Shipment
Interstate Transportation of Stolen Property
And the following state crimes:
This is urgent. . call DOJ 202 353 1555 OR 202 514 2000 & HOUSE OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE 202 225 5074. You can also email the Whitehouse.gov, call the supreme court 202 479 3211 and demand an independent special investigation into Russian interference, his violation of the Logan Act, Trumps illegal activities, conflict of interests and include a demand that he release his taxes before the inauguration.
Subversive Actions To Overthrow US Government!
The judicial power of the United States, shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and in such inferior courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The judges, both of the supreme and inferior courts, shall hold their offices during good behaviour, and shall, at stated times, receive for their services, a compensation, which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office.
The judicial power shall extend to all cases, in law and equity, arising under this Constitution, the laws of the United States, and treaties made, or which shall be made, under their authority;--to all cases affecting ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls;--to all cases of admiralty and maritime jurisdiction;--to controversies to which the United States shall be a party;--to controversies between two or more states;--between a state and citizens of another state;--between citizens of different states;--between citizens of the same state claiming lands under grants of different states, and between a state, or the citizens thereof, and foreign states, citizens or subjects.
In all cases affecting ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls, and those in which a state shall be party, the Supreme Court shall have original jurisdiction. In all the other cases before mentioned, the Supreme Court shall have appellate jurisdiction, both as to law and fact, with such exceptions, and under such regulations as the Congress shall make.
The trial of all crimes, except in cases of impeachment, shall be by jury; and such trial shall be held in the state where the said crimes shall have been committed; but when not committed within any state, the trial shall be at such place or places as the Congress may by law have directed.
Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying war against them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.
The Congress shall have power to declare the punishment of treason, but no attainder of treason shall work corruption of blood, or forfeiture except during the life of the person attainted.
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