Defendants were guilty of mail fraud and other violations. Why would they be convicted on multiple counts, rather than just one count for their illegal activity? Is that just piling on more punishment for the same event?
This case talks about a cattle rancher and Mc Connell who is an accountant. They are involved in many business related to cattle for more than 10 years. They had more assets than they represented. They took funds from banks and their clients to invest further. The situation arises when the price of cattle goes down in the year 2001 and they file a case of bankruptcy as they closed their business. The claim of cattle done by them is 343000 but they owned only 17000 of them. Banks lost $36 million and investors lost $147 million. Later on they admitted their mistake of claiming more. They were guilty of mail fraud and other violations. They should not be convicted for more multiple counts than one count for their illegal activity. Yes there is a piling on more punishment for the same event. Here in this case, sentencing guidelines are applied. Cattle rancher was sentenced to 108 months in prison and McConnell to 87 months. These sentences are imposed by the judges for criminal law violation. Earlier when these sentences were proposed, there were supporters as judges were easy on the punishment. Some judges were tough on punishment. It was unfair to treat the same crime with different punishments. Hence, later the Supreme Court made these guidelines advisory than mandatory. In this case also there is no proper application of the punishment. There is a piling of punishment for the same event.