A Gulf Coast fisherman, caught in the wide net cast by a post-Enron financial fraud law, will ask the U.S. Supreme Court on Nov. 5 to reverse his conviction for destroying undersized red grouper.
The facts of John Yates’ case read like either a tale of the one that got away or of prosecutors run amok. But underlying Yates v. United States is a purported “overcriminalization epidemic” that has united the nation’s business community with the criminal defense bar against the federal government and a tool designed to prevent the destruction of evidence.
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