U.S. Supreme Court

Case Status


Docket Number



2009 Term

Oral Argument Date

March 01, 2010


Questions Presented

1. Whether the federal “honest services” fraud statute, 18 U.S.C. § 1346, requires the government to prove that the defendant's conduct was intended to achieve "private gain" rather than to advance the employer’s interests, and, if not, whether §1346 is unconstitutionally vague.

2. When a presumption of jury prejudice arises because of the widespread community impact of the defendant’s alleged conduct and massive, inflammatory pretrial publicity, whether the government may rebut the presumption of prejudice, and, if so, whether the government must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that no juror was actually prejudiced.

Case Updates

Supreme Court rules on “honest services” fraud law

June 24, 2010

The Supreme Court held that a mail fraud statute enacted in 1988 criminalizes only schemes to defraud that involve bribes or kickbacks.

U.S. Chamber files amicus brief

December 09, 2009

NCLC urged the Supreme Court to hold that a mail-fraud statute enacted in 1988 is unconstitutionally vague. Jeffrey Skilling, a former executive at Enron, was convicted for allegedly depriving Enron employees and shareholders of “honest services.” In its brief, NCLC argued that Section 1346 does not clearly explain what it means to deprive another of “honest services.” NCLC also cautioned that the vague fraud statute deters legitimate business dealings.

Case Documents