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florican's avatar

Does a fraudulent civil lawsuit survive criminal fraud charges against its plaintiff?

Asked by florican (83 points ) October 26th, 2012

If a lawsuit has been filed and has not yet been dismissed, and the plaintiff is arrested on federal fraud charges for having falsified the material evidence on which the suit is based, does the lawsuit stay active?

If it stays active, can it make any progress while the plaintiff is in jail and on trial? (And will it be automatically dismissed if the plaintiff is convicted of the fraud charges?)

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5 Answers

Judi's avatar

I would think that th defendant would have to petition the judge to dismiss it, but that should just be a technicality.

marinelife's avatar

It would survive until it is technically dismissed, but that should be a matter of form.

DrBill's avatar

it will survive until acted on by a judge, to dismiss, continue, etc.

CWOTUS's avatar

Welcome to Fluther.

Are you writing a book, or is something this odd really going on somewhere?

Assuming a “federal fraud charge” for which the suspect is arrested and temporarily jailed, I can’t imagine him not bailing out of jail after the arrest, if only to assist with defending against the federal criminal charge. I would also expect the defendant in the civil case to request a continuance until the federal charge was settled, either to bolster its case or request dismissal of the case altogether (in case of a federal criminal conviction of the plaintiff) or seek a settlement (in case of acquittal on the federal criminal charges).

florican's avatar

This is really going on (in the U.S., I should have specified). Defendant has requested dismissal multiple times and is adamant that there will be no settlement offered. Plaintiff already received 90K of civil fines from the judge, I think for contempt / witholding evidence. Plaintiff may have started the case hoping for a settlement and then just refused to drop it.

Edited to add URL: http://money.cnn.com/2012/10/26/technology/social/paul-ceglia-arrested/

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