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Blog Posts in 2011

  • How Did Social Security Come to Be?

    Posted By || 29-Dec-2011

    Did you ever wonder how Social Security came to be? Back in 1935, President Franklin D. Roosevelt along with members of Congress passed a law known as the Social Security Act. The primary reason for creating the Social Security Act was to provide benefits for workers as they reached old-age and also to provide benefits for their families if the workers passed away. The Social Security Act is ...
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  • Eighteen Child Porn Websites Shut Down

    Posted By || 31-Oct-2011

    In New York a man was recently arrested and indicted for running eighteen child pornography websites. The websites were being marketed to people that spoke Chinese that were living in the U.S. The FBI actually received a tip from Chinese authorities that a large-scale child pornography website that was being hused on U.S. servers. The website was being hosted on web hosting company in Dallas, ...
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  • Prescription Drug Abuse Crackdown

    Posted By || 31-Oct-2011

    As this blog has noted several times, there has been a rampant increase in prescription fraud. Related to this, there has been a concerted by law enforcment and prosecutors throughout the country to ramp up efforts in trying to fight this crime. Recently, in Florida twenty-two people were arrested in a concerted effort to shut down so-called "pill mill" pain clinics. There are ...
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  • Lauren Baumann created an investment pool that turned out to be a class Ponzi scheme. She would get loans from investors based on claims that the money would be used to create a Christian "battle of the bands" rock concert. She promoted the concert as a way to make money by generating profits from company sponsorships and ticket sales. However, she used the funds to pay earlier ...
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  • What Is Insurance Fraud?

    Posted By || 10-Oct-2011

    The cost of insurance fraud in the insurance industry is $80 billion per year. Some forms of insurance fraud, according to the FBI, are Workers' Compensation Fraud, Disaster Fraud, Property Insurance Fraud, and Stage Auto Accidents. In auto accident fraud, the prosecution will charge that perpetrators stage auto accidents with another party or attempt to maneuver unsuspecting drivers into ...
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  • Bernie Madoff, in 2009, pleaded guilty to securities fraud, investment advisor fraud, mail fraud, wire fraud, three counts of money laundering, false statements, perjury, theft, and false filings with the U.S. SEC. (Yikes, that is a lot of crimes). He faced a statutory maximum of 150 years in prison and is currently serving a 150-year prison term in North Carolina. Madoff was a secretive ...
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  • What Is A Ponzi Scheme?

    Posted By || 5-Oct-2011

    A Ponzi scheme is a scheme that is promoted on the basis of high financial returns or dividends that are not traditionally available through run-of-the-mill investments. This kind of scheme was named after Charles Ponzi of Boston, Massachusetts. Charles Ponzi launched a scheme that guaranteed investors 50 percent return in postal coupons. This scheme inevitably was going to fall apart. The reason ...
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  • In August, a nineteen-year-old man, Matthew Allen, went to Dallas to dance at the infamous nightclub Afterlife. At the time, he was suspected of suffering from an overdose. It turned out that he overdosed from the drug ecstacy. The Dallas Police Department announced that it had arrested a nineteen-year-old woman, Skyler Brandt. Dallas Police are alleging that she delivered (by selling) the ...
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  • Legendary IndyCar Series Al Unser Jr. was arrested last week for his third alcohol related offense. Unser Jr. won over thirty wins and was inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame. However, after he retired it appeared that he had been battling alcohol depedency. In 2007, he was arrested for a hit and run while he was intoxicated. He was also arrested previously for an alcohol related offense ...
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  • New DWI Warnings

    Posted By || 20-Sep-2011

    Effective September 1, 2011, the Texas Legislature passed a bill that will change the way the police request a blood or breath specimen if you have been arrested for driving while intoxicated. This change was made in the Texas Transportation Code Section 724.015. This change mandaties that officers now warn subjects arrested for DWI and BWI that "if a person refuses to submit to the taking of ...
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  • Change To Texas Stalking Laws

    Posted By || 20-Sep-2011

    In regards to changes that the Texas Legislature made to family violence statutes this past session, there was a whole lot of not much. However, in recent years we have seen the expansion of the definition of family violence to include not just spouses, but to include those involved in a dating relationship with the alleged victim. This past session, the Texas Legislature expanded the defintion of ...
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  • Deferred Adjudication For DWI?

    Posted By || 19-Sep-2011

    Over the past several years, the Texas Legislature has attempted to pass a bill that will allow deferred adjudication for those that commit the offense of driving while intoxicated. This is supposed to be a viable alternative for those that make a mistake and want to move with their life. After all, a person who has been charged with much more serious offense can be eligible for deferred ...
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  • Expansion Of Death Penalty In Texas

    Posted By || 19-Sep-2011

    In Texas, there are a large number of murders committed every year. Every year, the State of Texas commits a substantial portion of money to the prosecution of those charged with murder. As Texas leads the nation in the number of executions each year, Texas expends substantial sums of money to the prosecution of those that commit capital murder. In order to be convicted of capital murder, a person ...
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  • As this blog has stated repeatedly, sexual assault crimes are starting to be prosecuted with more vigor and tenacity. The Texas Legislature has helped spur this along. The Texas Legislature passed House Bill 3 which changes the punsihment of repeat offenders of aggravated sexual assault and sexual assault. Now, if a person has a previous conviction for aggravated sexual assault or sexual assault ...
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  • The Texas Legislature passed House Bill 215 to fight the onslaught of credit card skimming. This bill has now paved the wave to increase the prosecutions for those who used credit card/debit card skimming machines. Previously, the law provided that in order for one to be convicted of the offense of using these machines, the State had to prove an intent to harm or defraud another person. However, ...
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  • Possession Of K2 Is Now A Crime

    Posted By || 13-Sep-2011

    Yesterday, we blogged the transformation of the legality to illegallity of bath salts. We noted that these drugs had started to undergo increase scrutiny due to the side effects of bath salts. "K2" or "spice" was once considered to be a legal alternative to marijuana. Whereas the possession of marijuana was a criminal offense, possession of K2 was a legal alternative and not a ...
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  • We have blogged about the bills that the Texas Legislature passed this past session. The Texas Legislature passed several laws that affect drug crimes and punishment in Texas. Previously, we have noted the increase scrutiny that the possession of bath salts have undergone over the last several months. This scrutiny did not go unnoticed by the Texas Legislature. House Bill 2118 now makes the ...
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  • Fatal Alcohol Poisoning

    Posted By || 12-Sep-2011

    The Texas Legislature has passed House Bill 3474 and Senate Bill 1331. These bills were passed to tackle the problem of fatal alcohol poisoning. These bills are concerned with the consumption and/or possession of alcohol by a minor. These bills now provide immunity for possession or consuming alcohol to a minor that calls 911 because someone is suffering from alcohol poisoning. The rationale ...
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  • In 1983, the Supreme Court of the United States released the very important opinion of Heckler v. Campbell, 103 S.Ct. 1952, 1957-58 (1983). The reason that this case is so important is that the Social Security Administration has adopted the opinion in Social Security Ruling 83-46c. The Supreme Court, and subsequently the Social Security Administration, noted that the determination of disability at ...
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  • The Medical-Vocational Guidelines used by the Social Security Administration is a grid that will determine whether a finding of disabled or not disabled based upon the age, education, and work history at the "maximum sustained work capability" that relates to the exertional level of a person's occupation. There are three potential exertional levels: (1) sedentary; (2) light work; and ...
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  • Over the past several days, we have been blogging about the driver's license suspension a person will face when he or she is arrested for DWI. In Texas, a person convicted of a drug offense does face a license suspension. The statute regulating license suspension states that if they are convicted of an offense under the Texas Controlled Substances Act, a drug offense, or other certain felonies ...
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  • The SSA defines exertional limitations as those restrictions that will affect an individual's capacity to the meet the seven strength demands of jobs. These seven demands are sitting, standing, walking, lifting, carrying, pushing, and pulling). Each exertional limitation is considered independently even though the RFC assessment will combine all activities. The nonexertional limitations are ...
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  • Administrative Suspensions are regulated by Chapter 524 of the Texas Transportation Code. If a person fails to request a hearing or fails to appear to a hearing withou just cause, then the DPS's ruling or determination is final. A very important reason why a person should request a hearing is that the request for a hearing will stay the suspension of the license until the date of the final ...
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  • Can I Go To Trial While I Am Handcuffed?

    Posted By || 31-Aug-2011

    Simply because someone is in jail awaiting his or her trial does not mean that they waive some fundamental rights to a fair trial. Yesterday, we addressed the issue of whether a defendant can be tried in jail clothing and discovered that to do so would violate a person's right to a fair trial. The same principle is true for a defendant being placed in handcuffs during trial As a general rule, ...
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  • Yesterday, we began addressing the step 5 of the sequential evaluation process. It is important to note that the burden in on the claimant through steps 1 through steps 4. At step 5, however, the burden shifts to the Social Security Administration to prove that the that there are jobs that exist in significant numbers in the national economy. The SSA must demonstrate or meet its burden by ...
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