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Category Archives: Criminal Law

Justice Department Cracking Down on Coronavirus Aid Fraud as Losses Top $8 Billion

The U.S. Department of Justice is taking stringent measures to combat widespread fraud it has discovered in connection with federal aid programs adopted during the COVID-19 pandemic. The alleged fraud, which touches nearly all types of aid provided for families, workers and businesses, amounts to at least $8 billion, according to the DOJ. In response,… Read More »

Potential Defenses to Child Pornography Possession and Distribution Charges

Pennsylvania and federal laws prohibit the intentional possession and/or distribution of child pornography. Law enforcement agencies conduct long and detailed investigations to gather as much information as possible before moving in to arrest an alleged offender, often through so-called sting operations. A criminal prosecution can include a wide range of charges related to using or… Read More »

Illegal Fentanyl Dominates Drug Deaths in Philadelphia

Fentanyl, an extremely powerful and addictive synthetic opioid, is by far the leading cause of unintentional overdose deaths in Philadelphia. This grim reality is part of the opioid epidemic that continues to grip the nation. The Philadelphia Department of Public Health (PDPH) reported that of 214 people dying in 2020 of drug overdoses, 86 percent… Read More »

Defending Against Charges of Possessing or Distributing Child Pornography

Child pornography encompasses a range of criminal conduct under Pennsylvania and federal law. Prosecutions are typically the product of long, wide-ranging investigations that can result in multiple charges. Defending yourself against child pornography allegations demands having an attorney who is knowledgeable in state and federal law and is experienced practicing in courts at both levels…. Read More »

How Online Interactions with Minors Can Lead to Criminal Charges

The internet makes it easy to find and connect with people from all over the world. You become Facebook friends with someone, follow them on Instagram or TikTok, or DM them on Twitter or Snapchat. Plenty of online conversations are harmless. But if the person you are talking to is under 18, you could be… Read More »

Domestic Violence Accusations Rose Sharply During the Pandemic

Pandemic-related lockdowns and resulting isolation sparked an increase in reported domestic violence incidents in Philadelphia and across the country over the past year, according to national and local authorities. This increase has swelled the number of people needing a legal defense against such accusations. The National Commission on Covid-19 and Criminal Justice said in February… Read More »

Prosecutions Under 1960s Civil Disorder Law Shows Broad Reach of Federal Jurisdiction

Amid the rash of racial injustice protests nationwide in 2020, a federal statute enacted in response to the civil unrest of the late 1960s has come into play again. The Civil Disobedience Act of 1968 has been invoked by federal prosecutors in cases across the country. In Philadelphia, a federal grand jury recently indicted four… Read More »

Four Charged in Chester County Scheme to Obtain COVID-19 Unemployment Benefits for Prisoners

Four Chester County residents, are facing federal charges for allegedly conspiring to fraudulently obtain COVID-19 unemployment benefits for prison inmates, who by definition are ineligible for these payments. The CARES Act, which passed in March at the onset of the pandemic, provides for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. To be eligible for PUA, a person must be… Read More »

Pennsylvania Man’s Sentence Shows Seriousness of Sex Trafficking-related Charges

Criminal charges associated with sex trafficking can have serious consequences and defendants in these matters should obtain counsel from a qualified lawyer. Someone who is convicted of providing or promoting sexual services for hire might face much more than a small fine and some embarrassment. But certain types of serious misconduct linked to prostitution, such… Read More »

What are Considered Essential Businesses Under States’ COVID-19 Rules

During the coronavirus pandemic, previously bustling locations from malls to urban downtowns have gone eerily quiet. But your local pizza place might still be open, along with restaurants that can survive on takeout and delivery orders and, of course, grocery stores. After all, keeping people fed during an epidemic is critical, and food delivery and… Read More »