Happy holidays after a long break. While we may have been quiet, DOJ has not.

  • The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Portland has charged three men with bank fraud and money laundering. The three allegedly used SnapChat to recruit students at Grant High School in Portland to deposit counterfeit checks, luring the teens with pictures of fancy cars and piles of cash in a social media group called the “God Squad.” Start ’em young, I guess.
  • In Eastern Washington, an indictment divides 101 felony counts  among 22 defendants for a massive alleged fraud scheme that involved staging car, boat, and slip-and-fall accidents in four states over five years. The racket made more than $6 million from insurance payouts.
  • In news that should bring some holiday cheer to corporations in DOJ’s cross-hairs, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced a slight revision to the policy in DOJ’s much-vaunted Yates Memo. The biggest change is to relax the requirement that corporations identify all individuals involved in any aspect of criminal misconduct to receive any cooperation credit. Cooperation credit will now be contingent on a corporation identifying those individuals who were significantly involved in or  caused the criminal conduct.
  • In Pennsylvania, DOJ has joined a False Claims Act suit about alleged kickbacks paid to physicians.
  • Remember when Michael Flynn ruminated about sending a Turkish cleric from the US to Turkey but omitted that he and his company got paid half a million dollars by the Turkish government? Well, DOJ remembered . . . .