maandag 22 november 2010

Skilling Decision: No Get Out Of Jail Free Card

In this blog, I will continue on my previous subject of the appeal by Jeffrey Skilling. On June 24th Ruth Bader Ginsberg, a Supreme Court justice, didn’t deviate from the Supreme Court doctrine, which says: Don’t overrule Congress if you can avoid it. Therefore he examined the essence of the statute and came to the conclusion that the legal concept of honest services can only be used if there is a bribe.

This is important for future defendants in white-collar criminal cases but it won’t help Skilling to get out of jail. Skilling was convicted of 19 felony counts, of which only one on the basis of the statute of honest services.

Fortunately the Court didn’t overturn the convictions against Skilling but they instructed the lower courts to hold a new trial. That new trial started November 1st and it will take a few months. It is Skillings last chance at freedom. 

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