Sunday, June 4, 2006
This coming week may shed more light on the Jamie Olis case, as experts will present evidence on what the court should use as the loss factor in determining the sentence. Olis, was employed at Dynergy. He was convicted of mail fraud, wire fraud, securities fraud, and conspiracy. His initial sentence of over 24 years was remanded by the Fifth Circuit (Judge Edith Jones authoring the opinion) as the trial court’s approach to the loss calculation failed to "take into account the impact of extrinsic factors on Dynergy’s stock price decline." (see some prior posts here and here)
Olis was only in his third year working at Dynergy. His boss, who testified against him, received a sentence of fifteen months in return for a plea that included cooperation. A co-worker, also indicted, received a sentence of one month.
In a post- Booker world this case is a perfect opportunity for the judge to go beyond numerical calculations. Should individuals be punished so greatly just because they assert their constitutional right to a jury trial? Should a sentence be so heavily dominated by a numerical calculation that bears little resemblance to the actual culpability of the individual? Professor Doug Berman has some excellent comments on this case here comparing this case with the loss presented in another white collar case. Here is another white collar case that should also be considered.