U.S. Second Circuit - The FindLaw 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog

September 2017 Archives

Court Throws Out 'Official Acts' Convictions for Ex-NY Senate Leader Skelos

Sometimes, you just have to count your lucky Skeloses.

Dean Skelos, former New York state Senate majority leader, and his son Adam Skelos have won a reprieve from their corruption convictions. The U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals said jury instructions in United States v. Skelos were faulty.

But for an intervening decision by the U.S. Supreme Court in an unrelated case, the Skeloses might be wishing upon a different star. They were each looking at six years in prison.

'Fake Rape' Suit Revived Against Rolling Stone

After a college party, Jackie went up to her date's bedroom where his Phi Kappa Psi fraternity brothers were waiting in the dark.

Someone grabbed her by the shoulders; another punched her in the face. One said: "Grab its motherf***** leg."

"As soon as they said it, I knew they were going to rape me," she told Rolling Stone, which grabbed 2.7 million views for its online edition.

The problem was, it was fake.

The qui tam action brought against Wells Fargo in 2011 has been brought back to life by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, thanks to a recent ruling of the Supreme Court.

The case alleges, under the False Claims Act, that Wells Fargo, Wachovia, and World Savings banks all falsely certified compliance with banking laws in order to qualify for loans from the Federal Reserve System. The plaintiffs, or realtors, in the action, had their claims dismissed and that dismissal affirmed; however, on appeal again, as the appellate court noted, the standard has now changed, which resulted in a remand to the district court.

Fake Dead Sea Scrolls Writer Bound for Jail

It was enough to shake a lawyer's faith in God, if not the legal system.

Raphael Golb, a disbarred attorney, committed the heresy of challenging the origins of the Dead Sea Scrolls. He also faked emails to discredit scholars who said the Essenes, a Jewish sect, wrote the ancient scripture.

His evil plot failed, however, and hell soon followed. The U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed 10 counts against him for false impersonation in Golb v. Attorney General of the State of New York.

A former cadet at West Point Academy, the nation's premiere military academy, had her case, Doe v. USA, dismissed by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. The appellate court explained that a Bivens claim is unavailable for military cadets alleging a violation of their rights connected to their service.

Significantly, the court found that cadets are not just students at their military academy, like West Point. Instead, the student/cadets are service-members in training, and thus, any claims arising from their training and education are deemed to be part of their military service.