WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court is making it tougher for the government to recover ill-gotten gains from people convicted of securities fraud.
The justices were unanimous Monday in ruling that such recoveries are subject to a five-year statute of limitations.
The ruling could hamstring prosecutors from collecting huge sums of money in cases where alleged fraud has been going on for decades before authorities file charges.
The high court overturned a lower court decision that ordered venture capitalist Charles Kokesh to pay the Securities and Exchange Commission $35 million from investor funds he used to pay himself and others at his New Mexico-based operation from 1995 to 2006.
Lawyers for Kokesh had argued that the five-year window would reduce his payment to just $5 million.