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United States v. Mandel

United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit

July 26, 1988, Argued ; December 7, 1988, Decided

No. 88-7027

Opinion

 [*1068]  WIDENER, Circuit Judge:

The government appeals the granting of a writ of error coram nobis vacating the 10-year-old convictions of Marvin Mandel, former governor of Maryland, W. Dale Hess, Harry W. Rodgers, III, William A. Rodgers, Irvin Kovens and Ernest N. Cory (petitioners) for mail fraud and racketeering. We affirm the district court's decision which vacated the convictions and required the government to return to the petitioners all fines paid.

On November 24, 1975, a Special Grand Jury for the District of Maryland charged the petitioners in a 24-count indictment with mail fraud in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1341 and prohibited racketeering activity in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1961 et seq. 1  [*1069]  The indictment, in essence,  [**2]  charged the petitioners with participating in a mail fraud scheme involving gifts of clothing, jewelry and interests in land to support legislation that would be beneficial to the Marlboro Race Track, which Mandel's codefendants either owned or were interested in. 2 

Specifically, the 20 [**3]  mail fraud counts of the indictment charged that, beginning between January 7, 1969 and the spring of 1971, and continuing until the filing of the indictment, petitioners devised and intended to devise a scheme and artifice:

(a) To defraud the citizens of the State of Maryland, and its governmental departments, agencies, officials and employees, both executive and legislative, of their right to the conscientious, loyal, faithful, disinterested and unbiased services, actions and performance of official duties of MARVIN MANDEL, in his official capacities as Governor of the State of Maryland, free from bribery, corruption, partiality, willful omission, bias, dishonesty, deceit, official misconduct and fraud;

(b) To defraud the citizens of the State of Maryland, and its governmental departments, agencies, officials and employees, both executive and legislative, of their right to have the state's business and its affairs conducted honestly, impartially, free from bribery, corruption, bias, dishonesty, deceit, official misconduct and fraud, and in accordance with the laws and Code of Ethics of the State of Maryland;

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862 F.2d 1067 *; 1988 U.S. App. LEXIS 16573 **

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. MARVIN MANDEL, W. DALE HESS, HARRY W. RODGERS, III, WILLIAM A. RODGERS, IRVIN KOVENS, and ERNEST N. CORY, Defendants-Appellees

Subsequent History:  As Amended. Rehearing En Banc Denied, March 1, 1989.

Prior History:  [**1]  Appeal from the United States District Court for the District of Maryland, at Baltimore, No. CR-75-0822-S, Frederic N. Smalkin, District Judge.

CORE TERMS

convictions, mail fraud, defrauded, indictment, sentence, scheme to defraud, instructions, bribery, vacated, fraudulent, deprived, fines, writ of error coram nobis, intangible right, coram nobis, concealment, racketeering activity, coram nobis relief, district court, overturn, honest, racing, public official, jury charge, circumstances, imprisonment, petitioners', agencies, kickback, bribes

Criminal Law & Procedure, Racketeering, Racketeer Influenced & Corrupt Organizations Act, General Overview, Fraud Against the Government, Mail Fraud, Elements, Penalties, Postconviction Proceedings, Imprisonment, Appeals, Standards of Review, Bribery, Public Officials, Civil Procedure, Remedies, Writs, All Writs Act, Coram Nobis