Showing posts from November, 2010

Metallic Products Sued By EEOC For Age Discrimination

Company Has Mandatory Retirement Policy and Fired Employee on His 70th Birthday

HOUSTON - A Houston manufacturer violated federal law by enforcing its mandatory retirement policy which required the discharge of employees when they reach age seventy, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a lawsuit it filed today.

According to the EEOC’s lawsuit (Civil Action No. 4:10-cv-04783) in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division), Metallic Products had an unlawful mandatory retirement policy which required an employee to retire at the age of seventy (70). The Complaint alleges that, under the policy, Jeronimo Vidals was told there would be no work for him after he turned seventy, and he was discharged on his 70 th birthday.

Singapore Airlines Cargo Pte Ltd. Agrees to Plead Guilty to Price Fixing on Air Cargo Shipments

Company Agrees to Pay $48 Million Criminal Fine

WASHINGTON—Singapore Airlines Cargo Pte Ltd. has agreed to plead guilty and to pay a $48 million criminal fine for its role in a conspiracy to fix prices in the air transportation industry, the Department of Justice announced today.

According to a one-count felony charge filed today in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, Singapore-based Singapore Airlines Cargo engaged in a conspiracy to fix the cargo rates charged to certain customers in the United States and elsewhere for international air shipments from as early as February 2002, until at least Feb. 14, 2006. Under the plea agreement, which is subject to court approval, Singapore Airlines Cargo has also agreed to cooperate with the department’s ongoing antitrust investigation.

History and Development of Blackstone’s Paralegal Studies

Blackstone Career Institute owns the original curriculum for legal training. The vision of a thorough but simple reference series-one that would make law accessible to laymen-led to the foundation of the Blackstone Institute in 1890. The series was Modern American Law, and its authors were among the most respected of district judges, law professors, state supreme court justices, and members of the Board of Law Examiners. Special contributors included such distinguished men as:

Henry Parker Willis, secretary of the Federal Reserve Board
Joseph E. Davies, chairman of the Federal Trade Commission
George Sutherland, Utah state senator
William H. Taft, former President of the United States

The first edition of the books was published in complete form in 1916, four years after the work was started. The response was tremendous. Experts instantly recognized the splendid editorial work and the manner in which the books filled a long-felt need. Court after court added the series…

Somali Sentenced for Acts of Piracy Against the USS Ashland

NORFOLK, VA—Jama Idle Ibrahim, a/k/a Jaamac Ciidle, of Somalia, was sentenced today to 30 years in prison for acts of piracy against the USS Ashland, which he believed was a merchant vessel that he intended to seize and hold for ransom.

Ibrahim pled guilty on August 6, 2010, to attacking to plunder a vessel, engaging in an act of violence against persons on a vessel, and to using a firearm during a crime of violence in regard to an attack against the USS Ashland on April 10, 2010.

Federal Courts Order Seizure of 82 Website Domains Involved in Selling Counterfeit Goods as Part of DOJ and ICE Cyber Monday Crackdown

WASHINGTON – Seizure orders have been executed against 82 domain names of commercial websites engaged in the illegal sale and distribution of counterfeit goods and copyrighted works as part of Operation In Our Sites v. 2.0, Attorney General Eric Holder and Director John Morton of the Department of Homeland Security’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced today.

The coordinated federal law enforcement operation targeted online retailers of a diverse array of counterfeit goods, including sports equipment, shoes, handbags, athletic apparel and sunglasses as well as illegal copies of copyrighted DVD boxed sets, music and software.

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Charges Principal of System Capital with $3.5 Million Fraud Scheme

PREET BHARARA, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and JANICE K. FEDARCYK, the Assistant Director-in-Charge of the New York Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation ("FBI"), announced the arrest yesterday of JOSHUA WALLACE, a principal of System Capital, LLC ("System Capital"), a commodity trading advisor, on charges of fraudulently soliciting clients and investor money by misrepresenting, among other things, System Capital’s past performance and by inflating System Capital’s assets under management.

According to the Complaint unsealed yesterday in Manhattan federal court:

In 2009, WALLACE met representatives of a Third Party Marketer located in Chicago (the "Third Party Marketer") and told the Third Party Marketer that he traded in e-minis, which are futures contracts that can be traded electronically on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and are based on the S&P 500 index. WALLACE falsely stated that he had at least $…

National Waste Removal Firm Admits Discrimination, Settles With EEOC For $95,000

IESI Concedes It Fired Employee for Dyslexia in Violation of ADA

NEW ORLEANS – IESI LA Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of IESI Corpora­tion, a national waste removal firm, will pay $95,000 to settle a disability discrimination suit filed in June 2009 by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today. The court-approved settlement resolves the charge of a former truck driver, Ronald Harper, who worked for IESI at its facility in Shreveport, La. In its suit, the EEOC charged that IESI violated the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) when it fired Harper because of his disability, dyslexia, even though Harper was able to perform the essential functions of his job.

According to the EEOC’s suit, on the morning of August 12, 2005, Harper told his new supervisor that he is dyslexic. Approximately four hours later, the supervisor fired Harper, stating that he did not want to take the chance of Harper’s dyslexia causing him to see things “swirly” a…

Former CEO of Comverse Technology, Inc. Settles Civil Case with U.S. Attorney's Office and Forfeits Over $46 Million

Jacob “Kobi” Alexander, the former CEO of Comverse Technology, Inc. (“Comverse”), and his wife have agreed to forfeit over $46 million to the government to settle a civil forfeiture action. Comverse is a publicly held technology company located in Woodbury, Nassau County, New York, that develops and markets telecommunications software.

The settlement was announced by Loretta E. Lynch, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, and Janice K. Fedarcyk, Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office.

EEOC Dramatically Slows Growth of Private Sector Charge Inventory

Despite Receiving Record Number Of Charges, Backlog Up Less Than One Percent

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) today announced that the agency is making progress in rebuilding its capacity to enforce the civil rights laws protecting the nation’s workers. Over the past two years, the EEOC has begun to replenish its depleted ranks and dedicate significant resources to training employees, the largest sustained training effort the agency has conducted in at least a decade.

As a result, the federal agency ended Fiscal Year 2010 with 86,338 pending charges—an increase of only 570 charges, or less than one percent. Between fiscal years 2008 and 2009, the EEOC’s pending inventory increased 15.9 percent.


Morris Will Forfeit $19 Million and Will Be Permanently Banned From the Securities Industry in New York State

NEW YORK, NY (November 22, 2010) – Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo today announced a felony guilty plea by Henry “Hank” Morris, the chief political adviser to former Comptroller of the State of New York Alan Hevesi, for his involvement in a pay-to-play kickback scheme at the Office of the New York State Comptroller.

Morris used the pension fund for a pay-to-play scheme in which he personally received approximately $19 million in fees from billions of dollars in pension deals and steered investments to friends and political associates.

Long Island Man Pleads Guilty to “Free-Riding” Securities Fraud Scheme

Earlier today, in federal court in Brooklyn, Noor Mohammed of Deer Park, New York, pleaded guilty to a one-count felony information charging him for his role in a "free-riding" securities fraud scheme in which he and others used checks to buy securities in brokerage accounts without having sufficient funds to pay for them. The guilty plea proceedings were held before United States District Judge John Gleeson. Mohammed faces a maximum statutory sentence of 20 years’ incarceration, as well as the payment of restitution to the victims of his crimes.

The guilty plea was announced by Loretta E. Lynch, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, and Janice K. Fedarcyk, Assistant Director-in-Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office.

At FTC’s Request, Judge Imposes Ban on Marketers of “Detox” Foot Pads

Advertising Claimed “Ancient Japanese Secret” Could Treat Medical Conditions

At the request of the Federal Trade Commission, a federal judge has banned marketers of Kinoki “Detox” Foot Pads – that would purportedly remove toxins from the body through a person’s feet – from selling a wide variety of products. The FTC charged that the marketers falsely claimed the pads could treat numerous illnesses and medical conditions. In a settlement announced today, the judge banned the marketers from promoting or selling any dietary supplement, food, drug, or medical device, and from assisting others in doing the same.

As part of its efforts to crack down on bogus health claims, the FTC last year charged the promoters of the foot pads with running deceptive ads on television and the Internet that touted the “ancient Japanese secret to perfect health” for treating wide-ranging medical conditions.
The defendants – Yehuda Levin and his company, Xacta 3000, Inc. – sold a two-week supply of Kin…

Oil Services Companies and a Freight Forwarding Company Agree to Resolve Foreign Bribery Investigations and to Pay More Than $156 Million in Criminal Penalties

SEC and Companies Agree to Civil Disgorgement and Penalties of Approximately $80 Million

WASHINGTON – A global freight forwarding company, as well as five oil and gas service companies and subsidiaries, have all agreed to resolve investigations of Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) violations, the Department of Justice and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced today. The companies have agreed to pay a total of $156,565,000 in criminal penalties. Also today, the SEC announced its settlements with these companies, which involve civil disgorgement, interest and penalties totaling approximately $80 million. The matters stem from an investigation that focused on allegations of foreign bribery in the oil field services industry.

In documents filed in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Panalpina World Transport (Holding) Ltd., a global freight forwarding and logistics services firm based in Basel, Switzerland, and its U.S.-based subsidiary, Panalpina …


DA Vance Hails Strong Sentence for Sexual Predator

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the sentencing of MICHAEL PAYNE, 27, to 15 years in state prison, followed by 10 years of post-release supervision, for attempting to rape two women near Times Square.

“This defendant was a predator, lying in wait to attack victims who wandered into his path,” said District Attorney Vance. “Criminals like PAYNE cause long-term suffering for their victims, and our streets will be safer when he is behind bars.”

MSHA asks for preliminary injunction against Freedom Energy Mining Co.

Action against Massey-owned mine never before initiated in agency's history

ARLINGTON, Va. — In an unprecedented legal move, the U.S. Department of Labor's Mine Safety and Health Administration today filed with the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky a motion for preliminary injunction against Freedom Energy Mining Co.'s Mine No. 1. Located in Pike County, Ky., Freedom's Mine No. 1 is owned by Massey Energy Co.

Section 108(a)(2) of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977 provides for injunctive relief against noncompliant mine operators who habitually violate health and safety standards. In this particular case, Section 108(a)(2) calls for an injunction because Freedom Energy is engaged in a pattern of violation of the mandatory health and safety standards of the Mine Act, which constitutes a continuous hazard to the health and safety of the miners at Mine No. 1.

Baltimore Police Department Officer Sentenced to Five Years in Prison

WASHINGTON – A federal judge in Baltimore today sentenced a former Baltimore Police Department officer to serve five years in prison for violating the civil rights of a juvenile arrestee, the Justice Department announced today. Gregory Mussmacher was convicted by a jury in May 2010 for physically abusing a juvenile in his custody and for obstructing justice to cover up what he had done.

The abuse incident occurred in April 2004, when the defendant used his police-issued baton to strike a handcuffed and shackled juvenile in the head and face. Following the incident in 2004, Mussmacher was tried for assault and was convicted in state court. However, that conviction was later reversed, and federal authorities assumed responsibility for the case. Prosecutors with the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice conducted an independent investigation of the matter and brought charges against three officers, including Mussmacher, for civil rights and obstruction violations.…

Rome Man Pleads Guilty in Multi-Million-Dollar Timber Fraud Scheme Freeman Caused Temple-Inland Inc. to Pay More Than $4 Million Between 2003 and 2006 for Timber That Did Not Exist

ROME, GA—AARON WILBERT FREEMAN, 50, of Rome, Georgia, pleaded guilty before Senior United States District Judge Robert L. Vining in federal district court late yesterday to multiple charges relating to a $4 million scheme involving timber that did not exist. A jury had been selected and FREEMAN’s trial was set to begin today when FREEMAN pleaded late yesterday.

United States Attorney Sally Quillian Yates said of yesterday’s guilty plea, “Paper is made from trees, but in this case, Freeman created trees out of paper. He did so by manipulating his employer’s computer system to create phony receipts for timber deliveries that never took place. He also recruited timber truck drivers to redeem the fake receipts for payment, then laundered the proceeds through multiple financial institutions.”


Defendant Pretended to be a Landlord; Convicted of Stealing More Than $879,000 from Three Corporations

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the guilty plea of a property manager for stealing more than $879,000 from three corporations that own five rental apartment buildings near Columbia University. LUIS NUNEZ, 42, pleaded guilty to the top two counts in the indictment, Grand Larceny in the Second Degree and Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree.

District Attorney Vance said, “The defendant took advantage of tenants — many of whom were Columbia University students — in order to enhance his own lifestyle.”

Major Washington Apple Grower Hit With Preliminary Injunction

Court Issues 'Extraordinary Remedy' in Favor of Federal Agency Suing Company for Sexual Harassment

YAKIMA, Wash. – One of the largest apple producers in the United States has been enjoined from interfering with workers involved in a federal lawsuit brought by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today. Citing the “likelihood of irreparable harm” to current and former employees of Eastern Washington-based Evans Fruit Company, the chief judge of Eastern District of the federal district court in Yakima ordered a preliminary injunction against the company and its former general manager, Juan Marin, and held them accountable for an “environment of intimidation.”

Marin’s sexual harassment of Evans Fruit employees is the central allegation in the EEOC’s suit ( Case No. 10CV-03033 LRS in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Washington) filed in June of this year. At the time of filing, the federal agency also sought and won a tempora…

All Nippon Airways Co. Ltd. Agrees to Plead Guilty to Price Fixing on Air Cargo and Air Passenger Services

Company Agrees to Pay $73 Million Criminal Fine

WASHINGTON – All Nippon Airways Co. Ltd. (ANA) has agreed to plead guilty and to pay a $73 million criminal fine for its role in two separate conspiracies to fix prices in the air transportation industry, the Department of Justice announced today.

According to a two-count felony charge filed today in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, Japan-based ANA engaged in a conspiracy to fix one or more components of cargo rates charged for international air cargo shipments from at least as early as April 1, 2000, until at least Feb. 14, 2006. ANA is also charged with engaging in a conspiracy to fix unpublished passenger fares on tickets purchased in the United States from at least as early as April 1, 2000, until at least April 1, 2004. Under the plea agreement, which is subject to court approval, ANA has also agreed to cooperate with the department’s ongoing antitrust investigation.

Massachusetts Man Sentenced to Federal Prison for Burning African-American Church

WASHINGTON – Benjamin Haskell was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Michael A. Ponsor in Springfield, Mass., to nine years in prison and three years of supervised release for his role in the 2008 burning of the Macedonia Church of God in Christ, a predominately African-American Church, on the morning after President Barack Obama was elected as the first African-American President of the United States. In addition, Haskell will pay more than $1.7 million in restitution including $123,570.25 to the Macedonia Church.

On June 16, 2010, Haskell, 24, of Springfield, pleaded guilty to conspiring to injure, oppress, threaten and intimidate the mostly African-American parishioners of the Macedonia Church in the free exercise of the right to hold and use their new church building, which was under construction, and to damaging the parishioners’ new church building through arson and obstructing their free exercise of religion because of their race, color and ethnic characteristics.

2 men arrested for child pornography during 'Operation Safe Halloween'

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Two men were arrested Friday following the execution of search warrants for child pornography during "Operation Safe Halloween" conducted by the Wakulla County Sheriff's Office (WCSO), Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

Arrested during the operation were William Lee Johnson, 34, and John Elwin Roberts, 58, both of Crawfordville, Fla.

FTC Fines Online Retailers for Failing to Post EnergyGuide Information for Appliances

Three Firms Will Pay More Than $400,000 in Total Penalties

Three online retailers have agreed to pay more than $400,000 in total penalties to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that they failed to post EnergyGuide information on their websites to inform consumers about the energy use of major home appliances they sell. The agency also notified two other online sellers that it will seek a total of $640,000 in fines from them.

According to the FTC, the online appliance retailers knowingly violated the FTC’s Appliance Labeling Rule, which requires them to provide EnergyGuide information for certain products such as refrigerators, freezers, dishwashers, air conditioners, water heaters, and washing machines. The information estimates the annual cost to operate the appliance.