Brief filed: 03/12/2019
United States v. Blaszczak
2nd Circuit Court of Appeals; Case No. 18-2811(L), 18-2825(Con), 18-2867(Con), 19-2878(Con)
Decision below 308 F.Supp.3d 736 (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 29, 2018)
Confidential government information is not “property” for purposes of wire fraud and Title 18 securities fraud. Wire fraud and Title 18 securities fraud protect a victim’s property, not regulatory, rights. CMS does not have a property interest in information regarding a regulatory decision. Confidential government information is not a “thing of value” or “property” for purposes of Section 641. Congress has developed a measured, deliberate, and tailored regime for controlling government information. Expanding Section 641 to criminalize virtually any unauthorized disclosure of confidential information would vitiate Congress’s measured, deliberate, and tailored regime for controlling government information. The prosecution’s interpretation of “property” and “thing of value” criminalize core First Amendment activity.
Peter Neiman, Wilmer Cutler, Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP, New York, NY; Lindsay A. Lewis, NACDL, New York, NY.