3rd Circuit Affirms Criminal Conviction Arising from Willful Blindness in Submitting False Informati
Mass tort trusts do have weapons they can use to block fraudulent claiming. One of the many questions in asbestos trust claiming is whether the weapons will be put to use in any kind of meaningful manner. Certainly Trustees of the trusts, the US. Trustee’s office, and futures representatives could be seeking to put the weapons to use.
Pursuing criminal charges is one example of the weapons available when fraud is perpetrated on mass tort trusts. The point is emphasized by a recent Third Circuit opinion affirming use of a willful blindness instruction in a criminal trial arising from false submissions to a mass tort trust (Fen Phen). The defendant, a cardiologist, was convicted. The opinion is summarized in this April 5, 2014 blog post by a guest poster (Jopseh DiRuzzo) at the Federal Tax crimes blog. The case is United States v. Tai, ___ F.3d ___, 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 8129 (3d Cir. April 30, 2014).