United States v. Salahuddin, No. 13-1464 (3d Cir. 2014)Annotate this Case
Salahuddin was Newark’s Deputy Mayor for Public Safety. He allegedly conspired to use his official position to obtain charitable and political contributions and to direct Newark demolition contracts to Cooper, with whom Salahuddin was allegedly in business. Both were convicted of conspiring to extort under color of official right, under the Hobbs Act, 18 U.S.C. 1951(a). The Third Circuit affirmed, rejecting Salahuddin’s claims that the government failed to prove that one of the alleged co-conspirators committed an overt act in furtherance of the conspiracy; that the district court erred in omitting an overt act requirement from its jury instructions; and that the rule of lenity requires that his conviction be vacated. The court rejected Cooper’s claim that the jury’s guilty verdict as to the Hobbs Act conspiracy charge was against the weight of the evidence.