Question: The Sun Diamond Growers of California is a trade association
The Sun Diamond Growers of California is a trade association that engages in marketing and lobbying activities on behalf of its 5,000 member growers of raisins, figs, walnuts, prunes, and hazelnuts. Sun Diamond gave Michael Epsy, U. S. secretary of agriculture, tickets to sporting events (worth $ 2,295), luggage ($ 2,427), meals ($ 665), and a crystal bowl ($ 524) while two matters in which Sun Diamond members had an interest were pending before the secretary of agriculture. The two matters were decided in Sun Diamond’s favor. The United States sued Sun Diamond criminally for making illegal gifts to a public official, in violation of the federal anti-bribery and gratuity statute [18 U. S. C. Sections 201(b) and 201(c)]. The United States sought to recover a monetary fine against Sun Diamond. Was Sun Diamond’s conduct ethical? Has Sun Diamond violated the federal anti-bribery and gratuity statute by giving these items to the U. S. secretary of agriculture? United States v. Sun Diamond Growers of California, 526 U. S. 398, 119 S. Ct. 1402, 1999 U. S. Lexis 3001 (Supreme Court of the United States)
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