FL: Honest Services Fraud

A Palm Beach County Commissioner resigned after being charged with corruption charges, according to this report.

Mary McCarty and her husband were formally charged Friday in separate criminal investigations, one day after the former Palm Beach County commissioner resigned and said she would voluntarily plead guilty to a federal corruption charge.

Federal authorities have charged McCarty, 54, with a mail and wire fraud conspiracy to deprive the citizens of Palm Beach County of their right to her honest services as a county commissioner. Her husband, Kevin McCarty, 59, is charged with misprision of a felony for participating in and not reporting his wife’s activities.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida has a press release and other documents related to the case here.  Clearly, 18 USC 1346, the “honest services fraud” provision of the federal mail and wire fraud statutes, is receiving unprecedented interest and use as a prosecutor’s tool.  One commenter called the theory the “most slippery of concepts in the federal criminal code.”

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