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United States v. Tarallo

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
380 F.3d 1174 (9th Cir. 2004)


Aldo Tarallo (defendant) was a telemarketer in a fraudulent telemarketing scheme. Tarallo contacted potential investors by telephone and made several false representations to them. These representations were written on call scripts that management distributed to its telemarketers. Tarallo was charged with six counts of securities fraud. Tarallo argued that he was unaware that the statements he made to potential investors were false. At trial, another telemarketer who took part in the scheme testified that it was obvious that the script's promises of risk-free investment were false. In addition, there was evidence that Tarallo knowingly lied to investors about his office’s location to make the operation seem larger than it was. The district court instructed the jury to find that Tarallo was guilty of securities fraud if he made the false statements either knowing that they were false or with reckless indifference as to the truth or falsity of the statements. The instructions stated that Tarallo did not need to know that his actions were unlawful to be found to have acted knowingly. The district court also stated that "willfully" and "knowingly" had the same meaning. The jury convicted Tarallo. Tarallo appealed, arguing that the jury instructions were inappropriate.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Graber, J.)

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