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Nothing in 18 U.S.C.S. § 1344(2) requires the Government to prove that a defendant’s scheme to defraud created a risk of financial loss to a bank. Indeed, the broad language in § 1344(2) describing the property at issue—property owned by or under the custody or control of a bank—appears calculated to avoid entangling courts in technical issues of banking law about whether a financial institution or, alternatively, a depositor would suffer the loss from a successful fraud. And the argument that the Government must prove that a defendant’s scheme to defraud created a risk of financial loss to a bank fits poorly with the United States Supreme Court's prior holding in Neder v. United States that the
A part of the federal bank fraud statute, 18 U. S. C. §1344(2), makes it a crime to “knowingly execute a scheme…to obtain” property owned by, or under the custody of, a bank “by means of false or fraudulent pretenses.” Petitioner Kevin Loughrin was charged with bank fraud after he was caught forging stolen checks, using them to buy goods at a Target store, and then returning the goods for cash. The District Court declined to give Loughrin's proposed jury instruction that a conviction under §1344(2) required proof of “intent to defraud a financial institution.” The jury convicted Loughrin, and the Tenth Circuit affirmed.
Did the Government have to prove that Loughrin intended to defraud bank to obtain conviction?