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Oct 26, 2016

Whistleblowers v. fraudsters: False Claims Act being used in health care field

In 2005, Tuomey Healthcare System, a hospital in Sumter, offered orthopedic surgeon Michael Drakeford a pretty sweet deal—for each outpatient procedure Drakeford referred, the hospital would pay him well in excess of fair market value so long as he agreed not to make any referrals to competing locations. All of the other doctors in Drakeford’s […]

Oct 7, 2016

Tort/Negligence – Fraud – Statute of Frauds – Real Property Sale – Reasonable Reliance – Attorney’s Fees

Chatterjee v. Ivory (Lawyers Weekly No. 012-194-16, 11 pp.) (Mark Davis, J.) Appealed from Halifax County Superior Court (Walter Godwin Jr., J.) N.C. App. Unpub. Holding: Even though the parties only had an oral agreement that defendant would repay plaintiff the $27,000 he paid to buy a home for plaintiff, since plaintiff made a showing […]

Oct 4, 2016

Criminal Practice – Safecracking – Fraudulent vs. Surreptitious Means – Jury Instructions – Plain Error

State v. Ross (Lawyers Weekly No. 011-335-16, 13 pp.) (Chris Dillon, J.) Appealed from Cumberland County Superior Court (Ola Lewis, J.) N.C. App. Holding: Trying to open a safe by using a fraudulently acquired combination – as alleged in the indictment – is one type of safecracking; trying to open a safe with a combination […]

Sep 21, 2016

Securities – Fraud Claim – Scienter – Insufficient Allegations – Contract Renewal Announcement

Ash v. PowerSecure International, Inc. (Lawyers Weekly No. 002-021-16, 12 pp.) (James Dever, C.J.) 4:14-cv-00092; E.D.N.C. Holding: Plaintiffs’ complaint alleges that defendant Hinton announced that an important customer had “renewed” the defendant-company’s contract when in fact the new contract was significantly different and introduced inefficiencies into the company’s operations. Ins[...]

Sep 15, 2016

Document dispute proves fatal for fiduciary duty, fraud claims

Typically, when someone puts information down in writing and then submits it to the government, they can be held responsible for whatever is in the document in question. But a recent summary judgment decision by Judge Louis Bledsoe of the North Carolina Business Court shows that’s not always the case. Bledsoe’s decision came in a […]

Aug 31, 2016

Criminal Practice – Controller’s Accounting Fraud Conviction Upheld

U.S. v. Rand (Lawyers Weekly No. 001-138-16, 36 pp.) (Gregory, J.) No. 15-4322, Aug. 26, 2016; USDC at Charlotte, N.C. (Conrad, J.) 4th Cir. Holding: Although the government, in its retrial of a home-building company’s controller for accounting fraud, dropped earlier charges due to the unreliability of a computer forensics expert’s estimation of the number […]

Jul 11, 2016

Tort/Negligence – Fraud – Changed Theories – Car Repair

Nereim v. Cummins (Lawyers Weekly No. 012-139-16, 14 pp.) (Linda McGee, C.J.) Appealed from Mecklenburg County Superior Court (Lisa Bell, J.) N.C. App. Unpub. Holding: In his complaint, plaintiff alleged fraud based on allegations that the auto repair shop defendants – along with plaintiff’s insurer – intentionally underestimated the costs to repair plaintiff’s BMW in […]

May 20, 2016

Former lawyer who survived suicide attempt is sentenced

NEW YORK (AP) — A one-time corporate lawyer who cheated friends and relatives of life savings in a $5 million Ponzi scheme before writing a 16-page suicide note and jumping into the Hudson River was sentenced Thursday to five years in prison as former friends watched with content at the severity of his penalty. U.S. […]

May 16, 2016

Auto dealership wins fraud suit

A plaintiff’s allegation that a Charlotte car dealership sold her a lemon didn’t get her very far with the judge and jury, and her claims of fraud and misrepresentation, among others, netted her nothing. Attorney Adam Hocutt of the Dozier Miller Law Group in Charlotte reported the May 11 defense verdict for his client, Queen […]

Apr 8, 2016

Judge considering whether to release Conn before trial

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — A globe-trotting Kentucky lawyer at the center of an alleged scheme to defraud the federal government of more than $600 million in federal disability payments was described by prosecutors on Thursday as flight risk who should stay locked up while awaiting trial. Testifying at Eric C. Conn’s detention hearing, FBI special […]

Mar 23, 2016

Civil Practice – Fraudulent Transfer – ‘Reasonably Equivalent Value’ – First Impression

DWC3, Inc. v. Kissel (Lawyers Weekly No. 012-061-16, 14 pp.) (Martha Geer, J.) Appealed from Iredell County Superior Court (Lisa Bell & Tanya Wallace, JJ.) N.C. App. Unpub. Holding: Despite defendants’ argument that, pursuant to G.S. § 52-10, “love and affection” can account for adequate consideration in a conveyance of land from one spouse to […]

Feb 15, 2016

Trial under way in $100 million lawsuit against Venezuela

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A federal trial over a $100 million investors’ lawsuit against Venezuela includes allegations of fraud, hints of an international criminal conspiracy, and references to diamonds, German junk bonds and a mysterious house fire in Switzerland. At issue in the 2004 complaint are three-decade old promissory notes issued by a now-defunct government-sponsored […]

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