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Criminal Resource Manual

2083. RICO Prosecution Memorandum -- Proposed Indictment -- Final Draft

A prosecution memo will not receive final action unless the final draft of the proposed indictment is simultaneously submitted for review. It goes without saying that indictments must be proofread carefully. While the Section's review will pick up the more obvious errors in pleading, other errors involving allegations of fact, time, or place will only be caught by the trial attorney's personal familiarity with the evidence. All statutory citations, particularly of State statutes, should be double-checked for typographical errors. Review by the Organized Crime and Racketeering Section of all proposed RICO cases is not a substitute for the necessary first line review at the field level before the case is submitted to the Criminal Division.

One of the principal reasons RICO reviews may take longer than anticipated is that the case either has not been reviewed at the originating office by a supervisor, or the draft indictment is incomplete and/or unaccompanied by a prosecution memo. Another recurring problem is the submission by the submitting attorney of a "final" draft indictment which the author continues to modify without informing the reviewer, or simultaneously submits for review within the originating office. In any event, the indictment being reviewed turns out not to be the same indictment ultimately submitted for approval. Therefore in order to avoid wasted effort, the submitting attorney must not forward as a final draft indictment one which he/she has not in fact finalized or which has not been approved by the originating office.

It is the responsibility of the submitting attorney after the indictment has been returned to forward a copy bearing the seal of the clerk of court, to the Organized Crime and Racketeering Section.