Munger, Tolles & Olson attorneys E. Martin Estrada and Mark R. Yohalem published an article about fraud liability in the Daily Journal on Dec. 20, 2016. The authors describe how the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Shaw v. United States expands the criminal bank fraud statute and highlights the significance of proof of knowledge or intent in any fraud prosecution.
In the article, Mr. Estrada and Mr. Yohalem analyze the High Court’s decision in Shaw, a lawsuit stemming from a “common identity-theft/fraud scheme” between two individuals. The High Court rejected the plaintiff’s argument that bank fraud statute 18 U.S.C. Section 1344 “does not criminalize fraudulent schemes to deprive third-party bank customers of their deposits.”
In ruling that a defendant can violate a bank fraud statute when a bank customer, rather than the bank itself, is the ultimate target of its fraudulent scheme, the Supreme Court “underscores that proof of knowing or intentional deceit is the centerpiece of any fraud prosecution,” Mr. Estrada and Mr. Yohalem wrote.
Mr. Estrada focuses his practice on trials, complex litigation, internal investigations and appeals. He represents major corporations before both federal and state courts in a variety of areas, including antitrust, environmental regulation, securities, banking and competition law. He is a former federal prosecutor and supervisor in the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Mr. Yohalem’s practice is focused on complex litigation and appeals. He previously served as Deputy Chief of Appeals at the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California.