CEO Charged in Medicare Anti-Kickback $4,000,000 Conspiracy Facing 6-8 Years Imprisonment, Sentence: 1-Day

U.S.A .v. Krawczyk, No. 19-519 (U.S.D.C.). A CEO of a medical equipment company was charged with the payment of “kickbacks” in violation of the Medicare Anti-Kickback Statute simply because he used digital marketing which involved payment for each completed order placed. The defendant was facing a 6-8 years sentence of imprisonment, following his guilty plea. Ms. Lefeber successfully proved at sentencing that the statute, that the Medicare Anti-Kickback Statute, which has not been amended since 1977, was antiquated and had not kept pace with the internet age. At sentencing she offered the testimony of a renowned Wharton professor who testified that her client’s digital marketing business practices were universally accepted and that it was only under the Medicare Anti-Kickback Statute that payment per completed order was a crime. Ms. Lefeber used this testimony to get a huge downward variance, arguing that her client fell in between the crosshairs of technology and the law. She also proved that his case was extraordinary in many ways and that her client exercised good faith in his reliance upon others. Ms. Lefeber also presented a forensic psychiatric expert who testified to the multiple stressors in her client’s life and underlying medical/psychiatric conditions that influenced his judgment.

Convinced by Ms. Lefeber’s presentation, the Judge sentenced the defendant to a sentence of 1 Day imprisonment. The defendant was released at 4:00 pm, on the day of sentencing.

Business Owner Charged With Tax Structuring and Money Laundering Found "Not Guilty" On All Counts By Federal Jury

U.S.A. V. Wilbur Ross, No. 12-285. The defendant, a Montgomery County businessman who had played by the rules his entire life, with not even an arrest in his lifetime, was targeted by a federal informant. The Department of Homeland Security sent a former drug dealer--later a paid government informant, to visit Mr. Ross's check cashing franchise more than 28 times over a 2 1/2 year period in repeated attempts to entice Mr. Ross or his employees to violate federal money laundering and tax structuring statutes. Ms. Lefeber vigorously argued the defense of ENTRAPMENT to the jury and the defendant was ACQUITTED of all charges following a federal jury trial lasting over one week.

Agents from the Department of Homeland Security equipped the informant with false identification materials and more than $20,000 in "tip money," intended to bait the defendant's employees into violating the law, the government relentlessly pursued Ms. Lefeber's client. The government's informant was repeatedly rebuffed by Mr. Ross and his staff, who not only declined to cooperate but filed numerous Suspicious Activity Reports with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network following the informant’s visits to the business. Ms. Lefeber proved that he had no predisposition to commit the crime and that he was innocent.

Mr. Ross is a free man today as a result of Ms. Lefeber's extraordinary work on his behalf.

Copyright, Wire Fraud, and Access Device Fraud & Conspiracy, Client Facing 18-22 Years Imprisonment, Sentence 28 Months

U.S.A. v. Gonzales, Crim. No. 21-367 (U.S.D.C.). The defendant pled guilty to a $168,000,000 conspiracy to distribute copyright protected video content (movies, television shows, sporting events, etc.) via subscription-based internet sites that the defendants controlled and operated. The conspirators positioned themselves as direct competitors to cable companies (Verizon, Comcast, Direct TV), using the cable company equipment to facilitate the competition, but avoided paying the required license fees, in violation of the copyright infringement laws. In order to facilitate the crime, the conspirators stripped the signal from the cable companies’ set top boxes of the protections and pirated the intellectual property. Through mass marketing campaigns for their service, the conspirators obtained hundreds of thousands of their own subscribers to whom this pirated content was streamed. The government claimed that the amount of loss was $168,000,000.00, with a guideline range of imprisonment of 18-22 years.

Ms. Lefeber successfully reduced the amount of loss to $4,000,000.00 and the defendant was sentenced to 28 months’ imprisonment.

University Professor Found "NOT GUILTY" On Multiple Counts of $700,000 Federal Grant Wire Fraud and Amount of Loss Reduced To $73,000

U.S. A. v. Ding, No. 15-0035 (U.S.D.C.) The defendant, a Lehigh University physics professor, was charged in a multi-count Indictment alleging fraud in connection with the procurement and fulfillment of federal grants from NASA. Following a 10 day federal jury trial, the jury acquitted the defendant on four counts of a $700,000 wire fraud

This case involved numerous complex legal issues relating to the performance and execution of federal grants, including the materiality and timing of the alleged misrepresentations. Ms. Lefeber vigorously raised unique issues as to the core theories of the prosecution and mounted an extraordinary challenge to the amount of loss. Ultimately, the trial Judge agreed and the amount of loss was reduced to $73,000. The trial judge noted that it was the result of the exemplary quality of Ms. Lefeber’s trial strategy, written motions and briefs that the defendant was acquitted on multiple counts and had his exposure so drastically reduced. The Judge further noted that he considers Ms. Lefeber to be “preeminent” and among the best criminal defense lawyers in Philadelphia.

Client Charged With Internet Crimes, Facing 7-8 Years Imprisonment, Sentence: 1 Day

U.S.A. v. Taylor, Crim. No. 18-328 (U.S.D.C.) In a highly sensitive case involving a guilty plea to an internet crime, Ms. Lefeber’s client received a sentence of 1 day in jail, where the sentencing guidelines called for 7-8 years imprisonment. Ms. Lefeber successfully argued for this huge downward variance based upon psychological issues and her client’s extraordinary rehabilitation. In seeking mitigation in sentencing, Ms. Lefeber worked closely with a mental health expert who testified as to the root causes of her client’s behavior to demonstrate to the Court why leniency was appropriate.

Taxpayer, Fortune 500 Executive, Facing 2 Years Imprisonment for Filing False Tax Returns Involving Cryptocurrency Income, Sentence: Probation

U.S.A. v. John Doe, The defendant, an executive at a Fortune 500 company, pled guilty in federal court, to a multi-count Indictment, charging tax fraud as a result of his failure to report his cryptocurrency earnings and interest income on his federal tax returns. He faced a guideline sentence of 18-24 months imprisonment. Ms. Lefeber was able to demonstrate his extraordinary acceptance of responsibility as well as his strong leadership and commitment to his coworkers, family and community. Ms. Lefeber also brought the nuances and complexities of the federal income tax reporting requirements for cryptocurrency to the Court's attention to demonstrate that the defendant was an otherwise very law abiding, responsible citizen. As a result, the defendant received a sentence of PROBATION.

Credit Card Conspiracy to Commit Wire Fraud, Aggravated Identity Theft, Access Device Fraud and Money Laundering, Client Facing 24-37 Years Imprisonment, Sentence: 61 Months

U.S.A. v. Diarra, Crim. No. 19-392 (U.S.D.C.). The defendant pled guilty to $108,000,000 conspiracy to commit wire fraud, counterfeit access device fraud, aggravated identity theft and conspiracy to commit money laundering for participating in a conspiracy that was alleged to have purchased large blocks of thousands of stolen credit card and bank card numbers from websites overseas, using Bitcoin, Western Union, Moneygram and other methods to pay for the cards, then re-encoding the cards for subsequent fraudulent use. The government and the Probation Department’s Presentence Investigation Report claimed losses in the amount of $107,550,361. Ms. Lefeber successfully argued very recent Third Circuit and U.S. Supreme Court decisions (Kirschner, Nasir, Xue and Kisor) that persuaded the Judge that the amount of loss was only $60,000.

That winning argument reduced the defendant’s sentencing guidelines from 24-37 years’ imprisonment (286-447 months) to 61 months.

Client in Multi-Million Dollar International Money Laundering, Wire Fraud Conspiracy and Tax Evasion Case Facing 8-9 Years Imprisonment, Sentence: 8 Months

U.S.A. v. Rezabek, No. 19-590 (U.S.D.C.). The defendant was charged in federal court with money laundering and tax evasion in connection with a multimillion dollar international wire fraud scheme and was facing an 8-9 year sentence of imprisonment, following his guilty plea. Ms. Lefeber successfully filed numerous objections to the Presentence Investigation Report and also proved that the defendant had demonstrated extraordinary acceptance of responsibility and suffered from conditions that enhanced his vulnerability to other individuals engaged in crime who took advantage of his naiveté. Lastly, Ms. Lefeber presented evidence from a psychological expert who underscored the emotional and psychological conditions that influenced her client’s judgment.

Persuaded by Ms. Lefeber’s sentencing presentation and legal arguments, the Judge sentenced the defendant to a sentence of 8 months’ imprisonment, rather than 8-9 years.

Attorney Facing 10 Years Imprisonment For $4,000,000 Mail/Wire Fraud, Sentence: 60 Months

U.S.A. v. Cohen, Crim. No. 19-599 (U.S.D.C). In this high profile federal criminal case, an attorney, who had been employed in the subrogation department of the law firm of White & Williams, in Philadelphia, was charged with mail and wire fraud for masterminding a fraudulent scheme to create bogus subrogation claims in the amount of approximately $4,000.000. The defendant was facing 10 years imprisonment as a result of numerous applicable sentencing enhancements and the high loss amount. As a result of extensive legal research and successful arguments, Ms. Lefeber was able to convince the government that certain enhancements should not be applied. In addition, psychiatric and addiction experts testified on the defendant's behalf in mitigation and Ms. Lefeber was able to win a downward variance.

The Court imposed a sentence of 60 months - a significant victory for the defense.

Taxpayer Facing 2-3 Years Imprisonment For Filing False Tax Returns, Sentence: Probation

U.S.A. v. Richter, No. 20-184 (U.S.D.C.). The defendant was charged with multiple counts of filing false tax returns, in violation of 26 U.S.C. §7206(1) and pled guilty to the Indictment. Initially, the defendant was facing 2-3 years imprisonment based upon the government’s assertion of tax losses in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. Following an extensive forensic accounting analysis of the tax losses, Ms. Lefeber was able to reduce the tax loss below $250,000 and the applicable sentencing guidelines then became between 18-24 months imprisonment. At sentencing, Ms. Lefeber argued passionately about all the good in the defendant’s life and was able to win a downward variance to PROBATION.

Engineer Charged With Federal Conspiracy To Violate False Claims Facing 5 Years' Imprisonment, Case Dismissed

U.S.A. v. Barnes, Crim. No. 15-235 (U.S.D.C.). The defendant, an engineer, was charged with two counts of conspiracy to provide false statements to the government in connection with applications to participate in the Renewable Fuel Standard Program of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Having previously pled guilty to these charges while represented by other counsel, the client believed that the prosecution was unjust and hired Ms. Lefeber to help to vindicate him. Ms. Lefeber was tireless in her multiple presentations to the government to convince them to dismiss the prosecution. Ultimately, she was successful. Her client was permitted to withdraw his guilty plea and all charges were DISMISSED.

Businesswoman, Facing 10 Years Imprisonment in Indictment Charging $14.1M Mortgage, Mail and Wire Fraud and Money Laundering, Sentence: Probation

U.S.A. v. McCusker, Crim. No. 09-771. In a complex mortgage fraud, mail and wire fraud and money laundering case, Ms. Lefeber's client received probation where the government sought in excess of 10 years imprisonment based upon the indictment of a $14.1 million dollar conspiracy. Ms. Lefeber's vigorous and innovative defense caused the federal judge to conclude that the government failed to prove its case at sentencing and found that the amount of loss was less than $400,000.

In addition, the judge granted a downward variance, based upon significant personal factors and the defendant's lack of intent to cause harm, sentencing Ms. Lefeber's client to PROBATION.

Client, a Director of Environmental Services at a Veteran's Hospital, Facing 46-57 Months' Imprisonment, Charged with Bribery in Connection With Fraud and Official Acts, Sentence: 6 Months

U.S.A. v. Johnson, Crim. No. 20-305 (U.S.D.C.). The defendant, the Director of Environmental Services at a United States Veterans Administration Hospital, pled guilty to accepting bribes in return for awarding contracts for services to certain companies to perform work for the Veteran’s Hospital. As a result of these bribes, the companies received over $440,000 in payments for services that were not fully performed or were not performed at all. Although the defendant was facing guidelines of 46-57 months’ imprisonment, Ms. Lefeber highlighted his extraordinary generosity of spirit in fostering children, his honorable service in our nation’s armed forces and his serious and debilitating medical conditions.

As a result, the client received a sentence of 6 months’ imprisonment.

Executive Facing 5-6 Years Imprisonment in Multi-Million Dollar Wire Fraud and Tax Evasion Indictment, Sentence: 3 Years

U.S.A. v. Russo, Crim. No. 20-00047 (U.S.D.C.). This case involved a complex wire fraud and tax fraud, wherein the defendant, the Director of Information Technology of a large corporation, defrauded his employer out of approximately $2,900,000 through the creation of fraudulent invoices, billing for work done by fictitious corporations. In addition he made false statements on his federal income tax returns resulting in a tax loss of over $950,000. The government also attempted to use additional relevant conduct to enhance Mr. Russo's amount of loss and sentence. The defendant was facing a guideline sentence of 5-6 years imprisonment. I

As a result of Ms. Lefeber's compelling legal arguments and arguments for a downward variances based upon the extraordinary family circumstances in this case, the defendant received a sentence of 3 years imprisonment.

Client Charged With Unauthorized Access to Computer Facing 2-3 Years' Imprisonment, Sentence: Probation

U.S.A. v. Spillane, Crim. No. 21-468 (U.S.D.C.). The defendant pled guilty to unauthorized access of a computer system for unlawfully accessing the computer systems of Bryn Mawr College and Haverford College, targeting the password reset functionality of account profiles, gaining access to the personal accounts of students and using the fraudulently obtained means of identification to submit fraudulent tax returns to the Internal Revenue Service and various other entities. Ms. Lefeber presented expert psychiatric reports and psychological testing results to demonstrate how multiple traumatic experiences and psychological issues impacted his judgment.

As a result of Ms. Lefeber’s presentation and argument, the Judge sentenced the defendant to PROBATION.

I.T. Professional Charged With Insider Trading Securities Fraud, Facing 12-18 Months' Imprisonment, Sentence: Probation

U.S.A. v. Ettu, Crim. No. 18-490 (U.S.D.C.). The defendant, a systems analyst, pled guilty to conspiracy to commit securities fraud by trading on insider information given to him by a tipster at Goldman Sachs, Although the sentencing guidelines called for a 12-18 month sentence of imprisonment, Ms. Lefeber presented compelling evidence in mitigation and convinced the Court to grant a downward variance based upon important factors such as her client’s excellent employment record, military service and good family relationships.

CEO of Mental Health Rehabilitation Centers, Facing 6-7 Years Imprisonment on Indictment Charging Multimillion Dollar Wire Fraud, Sentence: 1 Year, 1 Day

U.S.A. v. Dunoff, Crim. No. 14-103 (U.S.D.C.) The defendant was CEO and President of a number of substance abuse rehabilitation centers. He pled guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud in connection with an international ponzi scheme. Ms. Lefeber successfully demonstrated at sentencing, through numerous witnesses, a video demonstrating the impact of his current work and her arguments, the remarkable changes in his life since he committed the offense as well as the enormous good that he was doing in the community. As a result, he received a sentence of 1 Year and 1 Day.

Taxpayer Facing 12-18 Months Imprisonment for Under-Reporting Income and Filing False Tax Returns, Sentence: Probation

U.S.A. v. Zhuang, Crim. No. 22-437, (U.S.D.C.). The defendant, an entrepreneur and scientist with a Ph.D. in physics, had numerous online businesses and real estate properties. He became extraordinarily successful through his invention of colorblind glasses, resulting in large amounts of income from many sources in a short period of time. Overwhelmed and unable to fulfill all of the demands of his rapidly growing businesses, the defendant failed to report some income on his tax returns. The government argued for a guideline sentence of 12-18 months imprisonment. However, Ms. Lefeber was able to demonstrate, through a video presentation, sentencing briefing and argument, that this case differed from the usual case of tax fraud and that her client’s errors were the result of his extraordinary circumstance rather than criminal intent.

The Judge granted a downward variance and sentenced the defendant to PROBATION.

Tax Fraud Client Found Not Guilty

U.S.A. v. Thayer (U.S.D.C.). The defendant and her husband were charged in a 37 count Indictment alleging failure to collect and pay over payroll taxes and tax evasion federal jury trial, Ms. Lefeber represented the wife who became involved in her husband’s business and was charged with tax evasion. The government proved that the defendants failed to pay payroll taxes and used the monies collected to pay business expenses. Nonetheless, Ms. Lefeber researched and found loopholes in the criminal tax law which resulted in a finding of NOT GUILTY on numerous counts. Sentence on remaining counts: PROBATION.

Fortune 500 Company Executive Wins Below Guideline Sentence

U.S.A. v. Stehm, Crim. No. 13-568 (U.S.D.C.). Ms. Lefeber successfully obtained a downward variance from the federal sentencing guidelines for her client, a Fortune 500 company executive who had pled guilty to a lengthy wire fraud and tax evasion scheme wherein he created fictitious invoices and submitted them for payment to his employer and also failed to report the income on his tax returns. In addition, Ms. Lefeber was able to reduce the amount of loss by hundreds of thousands of dollars, resulting in a lower sentencing guideline level and reduced restitution and forfeiture orders. Based upon Ms. Lefeber's vigorous arguments at sentencing, her client received a below guideline sentence and was permitted to defer his sentence for six months due to family circumstances.

Suburban Mom Receives Probation in Murder-For-Hire Conspiracy

In U.S.A. v. Panell, Crim. No. 14-80 (U.S.D.C.). A suburban mother of three facing up to five years in federal prison for conspiracy to commit murder-to-hire. Her common law husband was in jail facing charges of capital murder. It was alleged that she hired a hit man to kill the three witnesses to that capital murder charge in an effort to protect her husband. The hit-man-turned-informant provided evidence to the FBI.

Despite incriminating recordings of discussions between Sonia and the hit man, Ms. Lefeber was able to compile a compelling case that caused the federal judge to reduce the sentence to three years’ probation (including time already served).

Ms. Lefeber highlighted her client’s tragic past, which included losing two children and a sister to a house fire, recurring flashbacks from extreme post-traumatic stress disorder, and multiple suicide attempts. Ms. Lefeber was able to demonstrate her vulnerability and how the co-conspirators manipulated her.

Expert psychiatric testimony brought in by Ms. Lefeber locked in the judge’s decision. Today, her client is free and able to care for her children and get the counseling she needs to overcome her past.

Attorney Facing 12-18 Months Imprisonment on Mail Fraud Charges, Sentence: 6 Months

U.S.A. v. Thompson-Rapley, Crim. No. 18-30 (U.S.D.C.). An attorney who foolishly kept client funds was facing significant prison time. The case was clear cut, with no viable defense. Nonetheless, Ms. Lefeber presented a highly persuasive argument to the Court at sentencing, demonstrating all of the reasons (domestic abuse, parental illness, financial hardship) which caused her client to commit the crime. Ms. Lefeber successfully argued that her client’s actions were an “aberration” in an otherwise exemplary life. Her client received a sentence of only 6 months incarceration.

Drug Charges: Client Facing 4-5 Years Imprisonment, Sentence: Probation

U.S.A. v. Beauford, Crim. No. 14-520 (U.S.D.C.). A hard working woman who because of her actions while involved in a misguided romance, found herself facing a 5 year mandatory minimum jail term on drug charges, received a sentence of probation. Ms. Lefeber successfully proved to the Judge the true good nature of her client through her many acts of charity and community service, excellent employment history and substantial character evidence. Through her extensive sentencing presentation, Ms. Lefeber successfully proved that the important goals of the criminal justice system – deterrence, rehabilitation, etc., had been met and there was no need to incarcerate her client. Sentence: PROBATION..

Acquittal in Federal Drug Conspiracy Trial

U.S.A. v. Theodoropodos (U.S.D.C.). In a drug conspiracy case involving numerous defendants, Ms. Lefeber won a "not guilty" verdict on all counts for her client following a federal jury trial lasting 3 weeks.

Representation of Philadelphia Attorney

U.S.A. v. Simone (U.S.D.C.). When famous Philadelphia lawyer, Bobby Simone, was convicted on federal charges after representing himself at trial, he called upon Ms. Lefeber to represent him at sentencing. Following her plea for leniency based upon his dedication to his profession and good works, Mr. Simone received a sentence at the lowest end of the then mandatory federal sentencing guidelines.

Methamphetamine Dealer Facing 10 Years Imprisonment, Sentence: Probation

U.S.A. v. Smith, (U.S.D.C.). In a federal criminal case where two brothers distributed large amounts of the purest methamphetamine known to the Philadelphia DEA because they manufactured it in the pharmaceutical laboratories of Smith, Kline & French in Philadelphia, Ms. Lefeber's obtained a sentence of probation for her client, following his guilty plea. His brother, however, received a 10 year prison sentence. Ms. Lefeber made an impassioned plea for mercy based upon the psychological issues in her client's family and the extraordinary vulnerability of his wife and child.

The Judge agreed and granted an extraordinary downward departure from the federal sentencing guidelines to PROBATION.

3rd Circuit Vacates Sentence for Environmental Crimes, Remands for Resentencing

U.S.A. v. Chau, 221 F. 3d 438 (3d Cir. 2002) The Third Circuit Court of Appeals vacated and remanded the sentence of the defendant who had pled guilty to environmental crimes, agreeing with Ms. Lefeber’s novel arguments. Ultimately, Mr. Chau received a greatly reduced sentence.

The defendant was an immigrant, having fled the war in Vietnam. He wanted to fulfill his dream of owning property in the United States. In 1986 ,he purchased the former Drexel School building from the School District of Pennsylvania, not knowing it contained asbestos. The building sat vacant until 1997, when the EPA inspected the building and ordered him to clean up the remaining asbestos. Since he lacked the funds to do this, tried to remediate it himself. He covered his body with trash bags, put a paint respirator over his mouth and nose, aviator goggles over his eyes and a bandana over his head and began stripping the insulation and putting it in trash bags. An EPA inspector stopped him, and sealed the property. The government later declared it a Superfund site; cleanup cost $200,000.

Chau pled guilty to charges including violating the Clean Air Act and was sentenced to 51 months in jail. Lefeber represented Chau on appeal, arguing that the district court had erred in applying certain enhancements to his sentence resulting in such a harsh sentence.

The Third Circuit agreed with Ms. Lefeber, vacating the sentence and remanding the case for resentencing. The lower court then resentenced Chau for considerably less time.

7th Circuit Vacates Conviction

U.S.A. v. Beith, 03-2530 (7th Cir. C.A.) Ms. Lefeber successfully argued in the The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals to vacate the conviction and remand for sentencing in a case where her client was charged with interstate travel to solicit minors, kidnapping, and more, in a highly publicized case. Ms. Lefeber did not represent him at trial.

Ms. Lefeber raised new and previously unexplored arguments both in her briefs and at oral argument before the appellate court. Ms. Lefeber vigorously argued that the district court’s decision to apply certain enhancements to the sentence were contrary to law. The appeals court agreed and remanded for resentencing. Ms. Lefeber's client's sentence was ultimately reduced by a number of years and he is a free man today.

Motion for New Trial Based On Prosecutorial Misconduct Granted: Sentence Reduced from 23 Years to 5 Years Imprisonment

U.S.A. v. Ford, Criminal No. 06-643 (U.S.D.C.) An extraordinarily detailed Motion to Vacate Sentence Based On Prosecutorial Misconduct by Ms. Lefeber, led to a new trial and a greatly reduced sentence for her client, Harold Ford. The defendant, who was originally sentenced to 23 years imprisonment on drug charges stemming from a 2006 arrest, ultimately pled guilty pursuant to an agreement and received a 5-year sentence, a huge reduction from the original sentence. Mr. Ford was released within months of his sentencing.

3rd Circuit Reverses Conviction in Drug Case

U.S.A. v. Baker, 221 F. 3d 438 (3d Cir. 2000), the Third Circuit reversed the conviction of the defendant after Ms. Lefeber’s appellate argument and briefing. The United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit agreed with Ms. Lefeber's argument that the search violated Baker's constitutional rights.

Baker had been convicted with a different lawyer at trial and sentenced to 23 years in jail on drug charges. Ms. Lefeber raised the legality of the search for the parole violation, and the Court of Appeals reversed the conviction. Ms. Lefeber's client was immediately released and is a free man and a hard-working, law abiding citizen today.