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How Not To File A Successful Rule 29 Motion

Publisher: Law360
December 19, 2017
Day Pitney Author(s) Daniel E. Wenner

Dan Wenner authored an article, "How Not To File A Successful Rule 29 Motion," published by Law360. Wenner's article discusses the motion for judgment of acquittal under Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 29 through an analysis of United States v. Weed, in which the First Circuit affirmed the district court's decision to convict the defendant on all counts. The defendant, a securities lawyer, was involved in a pump-and-dump scheme along with two other individuals in which he produced false opinion letters on their behalves and argued the letters fell into the safe harbor provision of securities law. The First Circuit noted "even if Weed's novel position is correct, a reasonable jury could nonetheless find that his admitted lies about the applicability of Rule 144 were material." The case exemplifies the difficulties federal criminal defendants encounter when challenging the applicability of criminal laws to the facts of their case.

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