Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Justices uphold broad use of anti-bank fraud law in Utah case
Washington • The Supreme Court on Monday unanimously upheld the broad application of a federal anti-bank fraud law.
The justices sustained the bank fraud conviction of Kevin Loughrin, who used stolen checks as part of a scheme to take merchandise and cash from a Target store in Utah. Using checks from a bank brought Loughrin under the bank fraud statute. He was sentenced to three years in prison.
Justice Elena Kagan said for the court that the law does not require the government to prove that a defendant intended to defraud a bank. Lower courts had come to different conclusions on that topic.
The Obama administration had argued that the law should be read broadly because banks lose about $1 billion a year to fraud.
Loughrin said that a broad application of the federal law would sweep under it many crimes that are usually prosecuted by state authorities. He also said Congress would have written the law differently if it had wanted his crime to fall under it.
Kagan said, "Neither argument is without force, but in the end, neither carries the day."
The case is Loughrin v. U.S., 13-316.