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In an opinion recommended for publication, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit rejected a defendant’s argument that a forfeiture judgment against him should be offset by his restitution amount in order to avoid to avoid a double recovery by the government. The appellate panel held “that even if the same government entity will receive both forfeiture and restitution, there is no double recovery because the two payments represent different types of funds: punitive and compensatory.”

In a concurring opinion, Judge Marsha S. Berzon (joined by Judge Sidney R. Thomas) wrote separately to note that the court left unanswered the unraised question of “whether a defendant who essentially is paid a commission on other people’s money he handles as part of an illegal scheme can be made to “forfeit” funds that passed through his hands but were never his.”

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