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ERISA Class Action Affirmed, and Criminal and Constitutional Matters

By FindLaw Staff on October 01, 2010 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

In Kirk v. Carpeneti, No. 09-35860, a challenge to Alaska's merit selection system, brought by a group of individuals seeking to establish the principle that all participants in the judicial selection process must either be popularly elected, or be appointed by a popularly elected official, the court affirmed the dismissal of the action where there was no such constitutional requirement.

In US v. Webster, No. 09-30173, the court affirmed defendant's convictions for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine, possession with intent to distribute over 500 grams of methamphetamine, money laundering conspiracy, and money laundering, where 1) the district court did not abuse its discretion by refusing to strike the testimony pertaining to a proposed exhibit, because the proposed exhibit was never shown to the jury and was excluded from evidence; 2) testimony established that the senders of the wire transfer at issue were defendant's co-conspirators and the wire transfer was relevant to the conspiracy, and thus evidence on that issue was admissible; and 3) the district court did not err in its jury instructions by failing to define "proceeds" narrowly to mean "profits."

In Quan v. Computer Sci. Corp., No. 09-56190, a class action pursuant to ERISA by participants in an employer's 401(k) plan against named and de facto fiduciaries of the plan, claiming imprudent investments by the fiduciaries, the court affirmed summary judgment for defendants where 1) the Moench presumption was fully reconcilable with ERISA's statutory text and did not encourage insider trading, when properly formulated; and 2) plaintiffs did not generate a genuine issue of material fact sufficient to rebut the Moench presumption that continued investment in the stock at issue was prudent.

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