Commercial Litigation and Arbitration

Municipal Corporations Unable to Form Criminal Intent Essential to RICO Liability

From Pilitz v. Village of Rockville Centre, 2008 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 72231 (E.D.N.Y. Sept. 22, 2008):

Courts in this circuit have considered whether a municipality is capable of forming the requisite intent to support a RICO violation. Each court that has faced this question has held that because a municipality cannot form the intent necessary to establish a RICO predicate act, any such claim must be dismissed. See, e.g., Guoba v. Sportsman Properties, Inc., 2006 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 73307, 2006 WL 2792753 *4 (E.D.N.Y. 2006); Wood v. Village of Patchogue, 311 F. Supp.2d 344, 354 (E.D.N.Y. 2004). This court agrees that, as a corporation, a municipality is not capable of forming the required mens rea to support any underlying predicate offense. Guoba, 2006 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 73307, 2006 WL 2792753 *4. Accordingly, all RICO claims must be dismissed. See Guoba, 2006 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 73307, 2006 WL 2792753 10 *4; Wood, 311 F. Supp.2d at 354; Brewer v. Village of Old Field, 311 F. Supp.2d 390, 398 (E.D.N.Y. 2004); accord Nu-Life Constr. Corp. v. Bd. of Educ. of City of New York, 779 F. Supp.248, 251 (E.D.N.Y. 1991); Frooks v. Town of Cortlandt, 997 F. Supp. 438, 457 (S.D.N.Y. 1998).

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