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Name: People v. Gofman
Case #: B139753
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 4
Opinion Date: 04/18/2002
Subsequent History: None

A federal indictment for conspiracy to commit mail fraud and substantive mail fraud offenses was brought against the six respondents, arising from six staged car accidents. They pleaded guilty to certain of the federal counts, and were subsequently prosecuted in state court for conspiracy and substantive insurance fraud offenses. The state indictment arose from eight staged accidents, including the six already prosecuted in federal court. The trial court dismissed the state counts because they were based on the same acts as in the federal action, and the prosecutor appealed. The appellate court reversed in part. The federal and state conspiracy statutes are “essentially identical” in that they require a conspiracy and an overt act, but not a substantive offense. The court erred in dismissing the state conspiracy counts for the respondents who pleaded guilty only to the federal substantive counts, but not the federal conspiracy count. Further, the court erred in dismissing the counts which related to the additional two accidents not alleged in the federal indictment.