For DOJ, A Three-Case Term
By Joe Palazzolo | May 6, 2010 12:36 pm

Solicitor General Elena Kagan on Wednesday summed up the importance of three fraud convictions under review by the Supreme Court.

“In the Solicitor General’s office, we’re interested in all of the cases” argued before the Supreme Court, she said during a panel discussion at a conference in Columbus, Ohio, according to The Wall Street Journal. “In the rest of the Justice Department, this is a three-case term. And the cases are Black and Weyrauch and Skilling.”

Kagan, a top candidate to replace retiring Justice John Paul Stevens, was referring to appeals by press baron Conrad Black, former Enron executive Jeffrey Skilling and former Alaska state legislator Bruce Weyrauch.

The three argue that the 1988 law barring honest services fraud is unconstitutionally vague. Under the law, it is a crime to commit fraud that deprives someone of “the intangible right of honest services.”

Federal prosecutors favor the law because it captures a broader range of behavior than other anti-corruption tools. Kagan said the Supreme Court’s ruling in the cases could have a broad practical impact, the Journal reported.

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