Friday, January 18, 2013

Corporations are not people, Part II

Last week, I told you about the guy who tried to say that he was riding in a car with a corporation.  He was ticked for driving alone in the carpool lane in California and used the corporate papers sitting on the passenger seat as a defense.  The Court told him that corporations are not people.  (Story HERE.)

This week, we have another story confirming that corporations are not people and this time it benefited a criminal defendant.  Tamatha Hilton was a bookkeeper for a company called Woodsmith's.  She would take checks written to Woodsmith's and give them to her husband.  The husband and another person opened a new bank account in the name of Woodsmiths Furniture Company.  They would endorse the checks as "Woodsmiths" and deposit them in the new account.  They allegedly stole more than $600,000.

The three of them were arrested and convicted of identify theft.  The statute under which they were charged makes it illegal to use "a means of identification of another person with the intent to commit ... a violation of federal law." They appealed their conviction.  The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed their conviction because they actually had stolen the identity of Woodsmith's, and Woodsmith's is not a person.

So, there you go Mitt Romney.  Two cases in the news within a seven day period that confirm that corporations are not actually people, my friend.  (Source: The Federal Criminal Appeals Blog)

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