LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
No Coverage For Sandusky's Offenses Against Children, Federal Judge Rules

HARRISBURG, Pa. - An insurer has no duty to defend convicted child molester Gerald A. Sandusky under the policy it issued to The Second Mile charity because the conduct alleged in underlying civil and criminal complaints did not arise out of Sandusky's capacity as an employee or executive of the charity, a Pennsylvania federal judge ruled March 1 (Federal Insurance Company v. Gerald A. Sandusky, No. 11-2375, M.D. Pa.).

11th Circuit Upholds Conviction On Criminal Copyright Charges

ATLANTA - A Georgia man convicted of trafficking in counterfeit labels and felony copyright infringement failed to overturn his conviction on Feb. 25, when the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals upheld a jury's verdict (United States v. Charles Ndhlovu, No. 11-16171, 11th Cir.).

Judge: Coke Company Can Raise Entrapment-By-Estoppel Defense In CAA Case

BUFFALO, N.Y. - Towanda Coke Corp. (TCC) and its environmental control manager can raise the entrapment-by-estoppel defense in a criminal suit brought against them by the government over violations of the Clean Air Act (CAA), a federal judge in New York ruled Feb. 22, because the evidence they presented to support the defense was sufficient (United States of America v. Towanda Coke Corporation, et al., No. 10-CR-219S, W.D. N.Y.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 25398).

Federal Judge Affirms Doctor's Exclusion From Medicare Program

HARRISBURG, Pa. - A federal judge in Pennsylvania affirmed an administrative ruling by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) excluding a physician from participating in the Medicare program for five years under the mandatory exclusion provision in the Social Security Act allowing such exclusion upon a criminal conviction related to providing Medicare services (Gregory J. Salko, M.D. v. Kathleen Sebelius, in her official capacity as Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, No. 3:12cv515, M.D. Pa.).

DOJ Says Florida Servicing Company To Pay $35M Over Foreclosure Practices

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) on Feb. 19 announced that Lender Processing Services Inc. (LPS) will pay $35 million in criminal penalties for its participation in a six-year scheme to prepare and file fraudulently prepared mortgage-related documents after the chief executive officer of one of its subsidiaries, DocX LLC, agreed to plead guilty to felony charges.

DOJ: Judge Accepts Transocean's Guilty Plea; Company To Pay $400M

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Department of Justice announced that on Feb. 14 a federal judge in Louisiana accepted Transocean Ltd.'s guilty plea for violating the Clean Water Act (CWA) over its conduct leading to the 2010 explosion of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig and that the company will pay $400 million in criminal fines and penalties (In re: Oil Spill by the Oil Rig "Deepwater Horizon" in the Gulf of Mexico on April 20, 2012, MDL 2179, E.D. La.).

Judge Accepts BP's Guilty Pleas, Agreement To Pay $4.5B In Penalties

NEW ORLEANS - A federal judge in Louisiana on Jan. 29 approved BP Exploration & Production Inc.'s offer to plead guilty to 11 counts of manslaughter and pay $4.5 billion in criminal penalties for its role in the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig on April 20, 2010, and ensuing oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, sources told Mealey Publications (United States of America v. BP Exploration & Production Inc., No. 12-cr-292, E.D. La.).

Federal Judge Dismisses Homeowners Insurer's Suit Against Sandusky

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. - Five days after a joint motion for entry of consent order and stipulation of dismissal was filed, a Pennsylvania federal judge dismissed with prejudice Gerald Sandusky's homeowners insurer's complaint seeking a declaration that it has no duty to defend or indemnify the convicted child molester against underlying civil and criminal proceedings (State Farm Fire and Casualty Co. v. Sandusky, et al., No. 12-01397, M.D. Pa.).

Interlocutory Appeal Denied In Lago Agrio Litigation Challenging $18 Billion Award

NEW YORK - Lago Agrio plaintiff representatives accused by Chevron Corp. in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York of participating in a criminal enterprise to secure an $18 billion judgment in the Lago Agrio, Ecuador, personal injury and property damage litigation were denied a motion Jan. 7 for interlocutory appeal of questions of New York law (Chevron Corp. v. Steven R. Donziger, et al., No. 11-691, S.D. N.Y.).

Transocean To Pay$1.4B To Resolve Claims Over Deepwater Horizon Incident

NEW ORLEANS - Transocean Deepwater Inc. and the federal government on Jan. 3 filed a consent decree in which the company has agreed to pay $1 billion in civil penalties, $400 million in criminal fines and plead guilty to environmental crimes to resolve claims stemming from the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in April 2010 and the ensuing oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico (In re: Oil Spill by the Oil Rig "Deepwater Horizon" in the Gulf of Mexico on April 20, 2012, MDL 2179, E.D. La.).

Amgen Pleads Guilty, Pays $762M For Off-Label Promotion Of 4 Drugs

BROOKLYN, N.Y. - Amgen Inc. said Dec. 19 it has pleaded guilty to a federal misbranding misdemeanor and will pay about $762 million in criminal and civil penalties to the federal and 50 state governments to resolve allegations related to its marketing of Aranesp, Epogen, Neupogen, Neulasta and Sensipar drugs (United States of America v. Amgen, Inc., No. 1:12-cr-760, E.D. N.Y.). View a complimentary copy of the criminal information document in the pdf attached below.

Off-Label Criminal Prosecution Unconstitutional Under 1st Amendment, 2nd Circuit Says

NEW YORK - The federal government's criminal prosecution of a sales representative's off-label promotion of a drug is unconstitutional under the First Amendment right of free speech, a panel of the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals said Dec. 3 in a 2-1 ruling (United States of America v. Alfred Caronia, No. 09-5006, 2nd Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 24831). View a complimentary copy of the opinion available in the pdf attached below.

Motorcycle Experts OK To Testify Against Alleged Kentucky Bike Thieves

LONDON, Ky. - Three experts in detecting stolen motorcycles applied a reliable methodology and are qualified to testify in a criminal case against an alleged bike-theft ring, a federal judge in Kentucky held Dec. 3 (United States of America v. Robert Jason Chapman, et al.,  No 11-51-GFVT, E.D. Ky., Southern Div.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 171075).

K-V Pharmaceutical Owes United States $67.1M In Fines, Settlement, Lawsuit Says

NEW YORK - A U.S. attorney on Nov. 26 sued K-V Pharmaceutical Co., telling a New York federal court that the bankrupt company's $67.1 million debt of criminal fines and civil settlements are nondischargeable (In Re: K-V Discovery Solutions, Inc., et al., No. 12-13346, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy., United States of America v. K-V Pharmaceutical Company, No. 12-13346, S.D. N.Y.).

BP To Pay $4.5 Billion, Plead Guilty To Criminal Charges For Oil Spill

NEW ORLEANS - BP PLC announced Nov. 15 that it would plead guilty to a dozen felony charges brought by the federal government and pay $4.5 billion in penalties over its involvement in the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig and ensuing oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Follow this link to view a complimentary copy of the complete Mealey's article.

Pfizer Says It Will Plead Guilty, Pay $546M To Settle Rapamune, Protonix Probes

NEW YORK - Pfizer Inc. on Nov. 9 disclosed that its Wyeth subsidiary will plead guilty to a misdemeanor and Pfizer will pay $546 million to settle federal criminal and civil investigations involving the drugs Rapamune and Protonix.

D.C. Circuit Vacates Restitution Order In Criminal Copyright Case

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A District of Columbia federal judge erred in ordering a criminal copyright infringement defendant to pay restitution to Adobe Systems Inc. in an amount equivalent to the revenue he received, the District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Nov. 9 (United States of America v. Gregory Fair, No. 09-3120, D.C. Cir.). Subscribers may view the decision available within the fill article.

Judge Rejects Government's Request To Empanel Jury To Determine CITGO's Fines

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas - A federal judge in Texas on Nov. 6 rejected the U.S. government's request to empanel a jury to determine if CITGO Petroleum Corp. should face up to $1.1 billion in civil penalties as a result of being convicted on two criminal counts of violating the Clean Air Act, 42 U.S.C.S. § 7401, because selecting an unbiased jury would be difficult and because the issue is more complex than the government contends (United States of America v. CITGO Petroleum Corporation, et al.,  No. C-06-563, S.D. Texas; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 158743).

Colorado District Attorney, U.S. House Committee Probe Abound Solar's Bankruptcy

GREELEY, Colo. - The district attorney in Weld County, Colo., on Oct. 25 announced that he has begun a criminal investigation into bankrupt alternative energy company Abound Solar Manufacturing LLC regarding the possibility that the company may have committed securities fraud based on allegations that officials at Abound Solar knew that products the company was selling were defective but then asked investors to invest in the company without telling them about the defective products.

FDA Criminal Investigators Visit Compound Pharmacy In Meningitis Outbreak Probe

ROCKVILLE, Md. - Criminal investigators from the Food and Drug Administration on Oct. 16 were at the New England Compounding Center Inc. (NECC) in Framingham, Mass., the compounding pharmacy at the center of a fungal meningitis outbreak, the FDA confirmed to Mealey Publications.

5th Circuit Panel: Couple Failed To Show Dangers Existed In Casino Parking Lot

NEW ORLEANS - The Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Oct. 8 affirmed summary judgment for a casino in a premises liability action, concluding that the trial court did not err by determining that the defendant did not have notice of a dangerous criminal element on its property (Bettie Johnson, et al. v. HWCC-Tunica Inc.,   No. 12-60213, 5th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 20891).

6th Circuit Affirms Ruling Upholding Criminalization Of RU-486 Off-Label Use

CINCINNATI - The Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Oct. 2 affirmed a lower court's ruling that Ohio's law banning off-label use of mifepristone, also known as the RU-486 abortion pill, is not constitutionally vague and does not interfere with a woman's right to protect her bodily integrity (Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio Region, et al. v. Mike DeWine, et al., No. 11-4062, 6th Cir.). A complimentary copy of the opinion is available in the attached pdf. document.

2012 Sets Record With $6.6B In Drug Settlements, Public Citizen Study Says

WASHINGTON, D.C. - This year has seen a record amount of financial penalties assessed against the pharmaceutical industry, with $6.6 billion recovered through mid-July by the federal and state governments, according to a study released Sept. 27 by Public Citizen ("Pharmaceutical Industry Criminal and Civil Penalties: An Update," Sept. 27, 2012, S. Almashat, et al., Public Citizen).

AU Optronics Fined $500M; Executives Receive Prison Sentences For Conspiracy

SAN FRANCISCO - A federal judge in California on Sept. 20 sentenced Taiwan-based AU Optronics Corp. (AUO) to pay a $500 million criminal fine for engaging in a global conspiracy to fix worldwide prices of thin-film transistor-liquid crystal display panels for use in computer monitors and televisions in violation of Section 1 of the Sherman Act, 15 U.S.C.S. § 1 et seq.  (United States of America v. AU Optronics Corp., et al., No. 09-cv-0110 SI, N.D. Calif.). View related prior history, 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 80605.

Woman Prosecuted For Using Abortifacient Can Challenge Idaho Abortion Law

SAN FRANCISCO - A federal appeals court panel on Sept. 11 retained a preliminary injunction against an Idaho state prosecutor for criminally prosecuting a woman who obtained an abortifacient drug over the Internet while the woman challenges the constitutionality of the state's stringent anti-abortion law (Jennie Linn McCormack v. Mark L. Hiedeman, et al.,  Nos. 11-36010 and 36015, 9th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. 19051).