American Journal of Law & Medicine

Fraud & abuse: Excessive Fines Clause of the Eighth Amendment - United States v. Bajakajian.

Fraud & Abuse: Excessive Fines Clause of the Eighth Amendment--United States v. Bajakajian(1)--The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that a civil monetary penalty violated the 8th Amendment's Excessive Fines Clause. This decision may have important implications in the field of health care fraud. On June 9, 1994, customs inspectors found respondent Hosep Bajakajian attempting to transport internationally an undeclared $357,144 in cash.(2) The government charged Bajakajian with the failure to report and sought forfeiture of the entire amount pursuant to 31 U.S.C. [sections] 5316(a) (1998). The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that although the entire $357,144 was subject to forfeiture, doing so would violate the 8th Amendment's Excessive Fines Clause. …

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