Merely Laundering Money in U.S. Is Not Sufficient U.S. Conduct to Sustain a Civil RICO Claim

The World in U.S. Courts: Spring 2013 - Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO)

Tymoshenko v. Firtash (U.S. District Court, S.D.N.Y., Mar. 26, 2013)

Noting that the Second Circuit had not yet determined the appropriate standard for determining the location of a RICO enterprise, the district court in New York concluded that the plaintiffs’ allegations failed under any standard, as both the location of the enterprise and the pattern of racketeering activity occurred outside the U.S. The court found that merely laundering money in the U.S. did not constitute sufficient conduct within the U.S. to warrant application of RICO to otherwise extraterritorial conduct: “The scheme alleged here—where both the victims and victimizers are foreign and the alleged perpetrators committed no wrongdoing in the United States, but merely invested alleged funds in U.S.-based corporations—is not sufficient to state a claim for a domestic RICO violation.”

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