(N.D. Ill. 1985) (RICO "pattern" requires separate criminal transactions or events, but all these acts can comprise one fraudulent scheme and still form a "pattern" provided that the transactions share common perpetrators, victims or motives, extend over a substantial period of time, and that the transactions do not simply involve ministerial acts).
As I interpret the continuity requirement it means there must be racketeering acts over a substantial period of time, which when combined with the relatedness requirement, form a group distinguishable in composition, i.e. a "design or configuration," and I am therefore aligning myself with the position of cases such as Kredietbank and Graham. Nowhere in the statutory language or in Sedima do I find any suggestion that a pattern requires different criminal episodes.
To engraft this additional requirement would overreach this Court's authority, would legislate rather than interpret, and thus would be subject to the same sort of attack as the previous judicial attempts to add requirements, such as criminal convictions for the predicate acts and a separate "racketeering injury," both of which were struck down by the Sedima Court. 105 S. Ct. at 353-58.
Moreover, an inherent tension exists between the dual requirements of relatedness and continuity. Viewed on a continuum, these two requirements must reach some equitable balance to form a "pattern." Judge Sarokin in Kredietbank was sensitive to this balance when he stated that the acts must be "sufficiently connected, but also sufficiently differentiated," slip op. at 5. One can easily see that as the acts become more related, the same transactions lose some of their separateness. See Teleprompter of Erie, Inc. v. City of Erie, 537 F. Supp. 6, 12-13 (W.D. Pa. 1981) (a series of alleged bribes during a fund raiser on one date held insufficient to constitute a "pattern."). On the other hand, if a series of predicate acts satisfied the requirement of separate "criminal episodes," then those acts might well not meet the relatedness requirement, being too disjointed (different subject matter) and too remote (in time).
Here the RICO counts of the indictment charge defendants with one overall goal -- to increase profits for defendants through allegedly illicit means. Defendants are charged with bribing Philadelphia School District employees (four of whom are named in the indictment) in order to procure the 1978 Lunch Program contract. Defendants are also charged with bribing these same School District employees during performance of the contract (1978-1981), in order to assure defendants of a more profitable return under the contract.
The 7 counts of mail fraud involve defendants' receipt of proceeds under this three-year contract. Last, defendant Pili is charged with obstruction of justice for acts allegedly taken 6 years after the first alleged bribe. In total, defendants are charged with 11 acts of bribery over a substantial period of time (three years), involving common perpetrators; related but distinct methods of criminal activity (two types of bribery, mail fraud, and obstruction of justice), and the enumerated predicate acts are not ministerial in nature.
I find that the indictment meets the "pattern" requirement, as defined by RICO and as interpreted by the Supreme Court in Sedima.
An appropriate order follows.
AND NOW, this 26th day of June, 1986, upon consideration of defendants' motion to dismiss Counts 1 and 2, and in accordance with the accompanying memorandum, it is hereby Ordered that the motion is DENIED.
AND IT IS SO ORDERED.