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Schwab pens “Plaintiff’s Perspective” on civil RICO.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

DATELINE: BOSTON, MASS. Terrence M. Schwab, a senior associate at Boston-based Tarlow, Breed, Hart, & Rodgers, P.C. (TBHR) recently authored a chapter in the Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education (MCLE) publication Federal Civil Litigation in the First Circuit. Schwab wrote the Plaintiff’s Perspective for Chapter 13 entitled “RICO in Federal Civil Litigation.” RICO refers to the Racketeer-Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act. Although it’s most commonly associated with fighting organized crime and mobsters, the civil provisions of the RICO statute afford a private cause of action against persons who engage in a pattern of racketeering activity. A typical civil RICO case will involve a white-collar crime such as mail or wire fraud. The penalties for violation of civil RICO are severe, and a plaintiff who prevails is entitled to triple damages and attorney fees. “Most people only know about criminal laws regarding racketeering through television and movies. Yet the civil provisions of RICO are powerful and can be used to stop many unfair business practices. Recently, Tyson Foods, Inc. was alleged to have knowingly hired illegal aliens to work for below market wages at its chicken processing plants. A group of Tyson’s workers brought suit against Tyson under the civil RICO statute alleging that legitimate employees were also paid below market wages because of the company’s illegal practice of hiring illegal aliens. It was an ingenious use of the statute, and shows that there are many creative ways to fight unfair business practices under the civil RICO provisions,” said Schwab. Schwab joined TBHR in 2007. Schwab’s practice focuses on disputes among business owners, shareholder disputes, commercial litigation, construction litigation, contract claims, creditor’s rights, employment litigation, insurance coverage claims and probate litigation. A Natick resident, he was most recently recognized as a “Rising Star” in Boston Magazine’s Super Lawyers special edition. He received a bachelor of arts degree, magna cum laude, from Boston University and earned his juris doctorate at Northeastern University School of Law. “We’re quite pleased to have someone of Terry’s stature on our litigation team. His knowledge of important federal civil litigation in the First Circuit is a fine testimony to his expertise and we are most fortunate to have him at the firm,” said Richard P. Breed, a member of the firm’s management committee. About Tarlow, Breed, Hart & Rodgers, P.C. Formed in 1991, Tarlow, Breed, Hart & Rodgers, P.C. is committed to providing high quality, comprehensive legal services to its clients. Featuring a breadth and depth of experience and perspective usually found only at larger law firms, Tarlow, Breed, Hart & Rodgers. P.C. offers sophisticated legal counsel to entrepreneurs, businesses, individuals, families, and institutions. Tarlow, Breed, Hart & Rodgers’ areas of expertise include corporate law, employment matters, mergers and acquisitions, litigation and dispute resolution, estate planning, taxation, real estate, bankruptcy, and municipal law. The offices of Tarlow, Breed, Hart & Rodgers, P.C. are located at 101 Huntington Avenue, Prudential Center, in Boston, MA 02199. For additional information, or to arrange for a consultation, please call 1-617-218-2000, e-mail, or visit ###