United States v. Maclin

Maclin, managing Khan’s medical practice, redirected Medicaid reimbursements from Khan’s business account to Maclin’s personal account. Maclin enrolled the practice in Medicaid’s electronic incentive program, without Khan’s knowledge, and got a one-time bonus of $21,250. About $80,000 was deposited into Maclin’s account. Khan's tax preparer noticed missing funds. Khan asked Medicaid to investigate. Maclin, charged under 18 U.S.C. 669, sought to preclude the prosecution from mentioning Khan's adult child with severe autism. The court directed the government to avoid drawing particular attention to Khan's son. Prospective jurors were asked whether they knew any of the witnesses. Prospective Juror 11 stated that she had “worked with [Khan] on developing her property. She has a home for autism” and was excused from the jury. After voir dire, Maclin unsuccessfully moved for a mistrial. The jury, instructed not to let “sympathy, prejudice, fear, or public opinion influence you,” found Maclin guilty. The court imposed a two-level sentencing enhancement because Khan was a “vulnerable victim.” Khan did not understand how to use a computer, did not bank electronically, and did not use e-mail or ATMs. The enhancement resulted in an advisory sentence of 15-21 months, which overlapped with the 10-16 month range without the enhancement. The court noted that Maclin showed no contrition and was still paying restitution for doing “basically, the same thing to another physician.” The court imposed a 15-month sentence. The Seventh Circuit affirmed. Prospective Juror No. 11 provided a vague factual statement, not an opinion about the trustworthiness of any witness. It was neither material to an issue in the case, nor inflammatory. Application of the vulnerable victim enhancement was appropriate and any error would have been harmless. View "United States v. Maclin" on Justia Law

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