Articles Tagged with Chicago criminal defense attorney

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pills-300x200Health Care Fraud is one of the most common white collar crimes charged by the Federal Government. The Health Care Fraud statute states:

(a)Whoever knowingly and willfully executes, or attempts to execute, a scheme or artifice—

(1) to defraud any health care benefit program; or

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Chicago Crimlaw-education-series-3-1467430inal Defense Lawyer Michael Rosenblat wins fourth not guilty verdict in a row.

Mr. Rosenblat’s most recent not guilty came on May 13, 2016 when the judge found the defendant not guilty of domestic battery.  The alleged victim claimed that the defendant pushed a heavy object into her knocking her to the ground.  In order to prove its case, the Cook County Assistant State’s Attorney called two witnesses to testify, the alleged victim and a Chicago Police Officer. Mr. Rosenblat’s cross-examination of the complaining witnesses exposed the fact that she could not see who caused the object to be pushed into her.  The cross-examination also uncovered many inconsistencies in her testimony that defied common sense.  The defendant was found not guilty without the defense calling a single witness.

On March 30, 2016, Mr. Rosenblat’s client was found not guilty of aggravated robbery, a charge that carried a maximum sentence of up 30 years in prison.    The complaining witness added facts in his testimony, which he never told to the police even though he was interviewed multiple times.  Mr. Rosenblat’s cross-examination of the victim’s prior inconsistent statements showed that he was not credible. Mr. Rosenblat called several witnesses in the defense case in chief, including the defendant.  Defendant was found not guilty of all charges.

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dog Supreme Court of Illinois holds that use of a drug-detection dog violated Fourth Amendment in People v. Burns.

On January 10, 1013 at 3:20 am, the police along with a drug-detection dog went into defendant’s apartment building.  This officer and his dog got into the building when a tenant let in a fellow officer, who was undercover.  The drug dog alerted to defendant’s apartment door and a search warrant was obtained.  The apartment was searched, drugs were found, and defendant was charged.

The Illinois Supreme Court first looked at the United States Supreme Court case of Florida v. Jardines, in which the police took a drug dog to the front porch of the defendant’s home and sniffed the door.  The Supreme Court of the United States found that this was a search for Fourth Amendment purposes. The US Supreme Court went on to state that the areas surrounding and associated with the home are considered part of the home.

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Chicago – In United States v. Pu, 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 3224 (7th Circuit February 24, 2016), the court addressed the district court’s loss calculation and restitution order.  Pu who worked for two companies, one of which was the Citadel in Chicago, a hedge fund, was indicted for and pleaded guilty to unlawful possession of a trade secret from Company A and unlawful transmission of a trade secret that belonged to the Citadel.  The district court found that Pu intended to cause a loss of approximately $12 million, and was ordered to pay restitution of $750,000.  He was sentenced to 36 months in prison. The $12 million intended loss calculation increased his sentencing guidelines calculation by a whopping twenty-level increase, even though there was no actual loss.  While the restitution order was based on a letter supplied to the court by the Citadel that included costs associated with an internal forensic analysis and an internal investigation.

The information that Pu was accused of stealing was used to conduct stock trades.  However, Pu use of the data resulted in him losing about $40,000.

For purposes of the sentencing guidelines, the loss is the monetary harm that was intended from the offense, or if the court cannot determine the amount of loss it may use the gain that resulted from the offense.  In the case of a trade secret, like in this case, the loss amount could be the cost of developing the information or the reduced value of the information as a result of the offense. However, the sentencing guidelines do not require any loss calculation greater than zero and the court called a loss amount “bonus punishment points.”

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prison-979960-sChicago, Illinois

A fifteen year old was charged and convicted of aggravated criminal sexual assault, rape.  The defendant was tried as an adult and sentenced to 36 years in prison, of which he will have to serve 85%.  The Illinois Court of Appeals reversed, finding that the defendant’s confession was wrongly admitted, and that the victim’s sexual history should have been admitted under an exception to the Illinois Rape Shield statute.  The Illinois Supreme Court reversed and remanded to the appellate court to consider only the defendant’s excessive sentence claim.

The State alleged that Defendant raped his counselor when she was taking him back to the residential treatment  facility in which he lived.

The State raised two issues on appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court.   First, whether the statement should have been suppressed and second, whether the trial court properly applied the rape shield statute.

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gun-and-bullets-1146529-sChicago – On a Sunday night in Chicago around Armitage and Kildare and Wabansia and Karlov the Chicago Police received numerous 911 calls reporting gunshots in the area. The callers reported to 911 hearing between 5 and 9 shots and based on additional 911 calls that the shots were fired from a black car traveling south on Karlov nears Wabansia.

The traffic was light, and two Chicago Police officers on patrol drove to Kostner and proceeded south. Kostner is a few blocks west of Karlov. The officers drove past a black car heading north and officers turned around and followed the black car. The Chicago Police officers stopped the car a short distance later. The officers approached the car and found a revolver on the passenger seat of the defendant, which had 5 of the six round fired.

The Defendant, a convicted felon, was charged with possessing a firearm as a convicted felon.  18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1).

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 jail-979240-sChicago – Many client and their families want to know if they will have to serve 85% of their sentence to the Illinois Department of Corrections.  Here is the rule from 730 ILCS 5/3-6-3


A prisoner serving a sentence for:

attempt to commit terrorism

attempt to commit first degree murder

solicitation of murder

solicitation of murder for hire

intentional homicide of an unborn child

predatory criminal sexual assault of a child

aggravated criminal sexual assault

criminal sexual assault

aggravated kidnapping

aggravated battery with a firearm as described in Section 12-4.2 or subdivision (e)(1), (e)(2), (e)(3), or (e)(4) of Section 12-3.05

heinous battery as described in Section 12-4.1 or subdivision (a)(2) of Section 12-3.05

armed habitual criminal

aggravated battery of a senior citizen as described in Section 12-4.6 or subdivision (a)(4) of Section 12-3.0

aggravated battery of a child as described in Section 12-4.3 or subdivision (b)(1) of Section 12-3.05

shall receive no more than 4.5 days of sentence credit for each month of his or her sentence of imprisonment;

A prisoner serving a sentence for:

Home invasion

armed robbery

aggravated vehicular hijacking

aggravated discharge of a firearm

armed violence with a category I weapon or category II weapon, when the court has made and entered a finding, pursuant to subsection (c-1) of Section 5-4-1 of this Code, that the conduct leading to conviction for the enumerated offense resulted in great bodily harm to a victim

shall receive no more than 4.5 days of sentence credit for each month of his or her sentence of imprisonment;

        A prisoner serving a sentence for:
aggravated discharge of a firearm, whether or not the conduct leading to conviction for the offense resulted in great bodily harm to the victim

shall receive no more than 4.5 days of sentence credit for each month of his or her sentence of imprisonment

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police-on-the-scene-1172422-sChicago – The Supreme Court in the case of Narvarette v. California, 188 L.Ed. 2d 680, April 22, 2014, ruled that an anonymous report of a traffic violation justified the stop of a vehicle.  In this case, a five to four opinion, the majority opinion is written by Justice Thomas and the dissent by Justice Scalia.  This case concerns whether an anonymous tip to 911 can justify the stop of a vehicle under the Fourth Amendment.

Here are the facts.  A 911-dispatch center for the California Highway Patrol received a 911 call that a pickup truck ran the caller off the road.  The caller gave a description of the vehicle, license plate number, and location.  The dispatcher relayed the following:  “Showing southbound Highway 1 at mile marker 88.  Silver Ford 150 pickup.  Plate of 8-David-94925.  Ran the reporting party off the roadway and was last seen approximately five [minutes] ago.”  Officers found the truck, followed it for about five minutes, did not observe any traffic violations, and pulled the truck over.  When approaching the truck the officers smelled marijuana and a search found 30 pounds of it.

The defendant filed a motion to suppress the evidence, asserting that the police lacked a reasonable suspicion of criminal activity when they stopped his car.  The defendant lost at the trial court level and on appeal to the California Court of Appeals and the California Supreme Court denied review. Continue reading

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DNAChicago – the Illinois Court of Appeals reversed and remanded a case in which the Cook County trial judge denied the defendant’s motion for DNA testing.

On October 28, 1999, the victim was shot and killed by a male wearing a gray sweatshirt. Later that day the Chicago police found a man sitting on a gray sweatshirt in a vehicle matching the description of the vehicle identified leaving the vicinity of the shooting. As the police approached the vehicle, a weapon was thrown from a window. At trial a witness testified that on the day of the shooting she spoke with the victim and then saw a man with a gray hoody whom she identified as the defendant. The witness testified that she saw the defendant’s face the first time he walked by but did not see the shooters face. Nonetheless, she identified him as the shooter in a line up and she identified a picture of the hoody.

Another witness who was sitting on her porch heard several gunshots and saw a man running with a gray sweatshirt on. She also identified the defendant in a lineup, the gray sweatshirt, and wrote down the license plate of the van he got into. Continue reading

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law-badge-1164850-sIt is common for criminal defense attorneys  in Chicago and elsewhere to advise their clients to remain silent and refuse to make any statements whenever they are being questioned by law enforcement.  But recently, the United States Supreme Court held in Salinas v. Texas, 570 U.S. ____, 133 S.Ct. 2174 (2013), that if a client/witness remains silent under non-custodial police questioning, the prosecutor can now introduce such silence at trial as evidence of guilt.  Custodial interrogation is generally, when a person has been arrested by the police and then the police are required to advise the suspect of his Miranda rights.  Under non-custodial interrogation, the police are not required provide Miranda warnings.

A custodial interrogation is when the person being questioned is under arrest or at least not free to leave. The difference is extremely fact based.  A person handcuffed and questioned is being subject to a custodial interrogation.  A person stopped for a traffic offense is not.

Before the Supreme Court issued this opinion, a suspect’s right to remain silent could never be used against him.

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