Question: Russello was a member of an arson ring consisting of
Russello was a member of an arson ring consisting of arsonists, insurance adjusters, and property owners. A group member would buy a building, the arsonists would burn it, and the insurance adjusters would help the owner recover inflated insurance awards. The group members would then share in the proceeds. During one period of time, the group burned several buildings. Russello, who owned a professional building in Tampa, Florida, arranged for his building to be burned and then settled with the insurance company, receiving $ 350,000, the highest amount possible. Russello in turn invested the money in legitimate enterprises. The federal government brought criminal RICO charges against Russello. A U. S. district court found Russello guilty and ordered forfeiture of the insurance proceeds. A U. S. court of appeals affirmed the lower court judgment. Russello appealed to the U. S. Supreme Court. Are the insurance proceeds obtained by Russello subject to forfeiture under the criminal RICO statute?
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