Sacramento, California - Governor Gavin Newsom submitted his 2020-21 State Budget proposal to the Legislature Friday which makes responsible investments in the state’s economic future while tackling head-on persistent challenges facing the state.

Washington, DC - The Department of Justice Friday withdrew the 1984 DOJ Non-Horizontal Merger Guidelines, and, together with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), released new draft 2020 Vertical Merger Guidelines (draft guidelines) and seek public comment. The draft guidelines, open to comment for 30 days, describe how the federal antitrust agencies review vertical mergers to evaluate whether the mergers violate antitrust law. Vertical mergers combine two or more companies that operate at different levels in the same supply chain.

New York - A federal grand jury has returned an indictment charging Christopher Casacci, 38, of Amherst, New York, with violating the Lacey Act and the U.S. Animal Welfare Act based on his trafficking of African wild cats in interstate commerce, announced Assistant Attorney General Jeffrey Bossert Clark of the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division and U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy Jr. for the Western District of New York.

Washington, DC - Capt. Neill’s Seafood Inc. (Capt. Neill’s) of Columbia, North Carolina, and Phillip R. Carawan, the owner, President, and Chief Executive of Capt. Neill’s, were sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Louise Flanagan, in New Bern, North Carolina. Capt. Neill’s was sentenced to a period of five years’ probation and is required to pay a $500,000 fine. Carawan was sentenced to 12 months and one day in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, and is required to pay a $250,000 fine for his role in falsely labeling millions of dollars’ worth of foreign crab meat as “Product of USA.”

Houston, Texas - An Indian national pleaded guilty Thursday in the Southern District of Texas for his role in operating and funding India-based call centers whose callers, and U.S.-based conspirators, defrauded U.S. victims out of millions of dollars between 2013 and 2016.

New York - Eric Dreiband, Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights, Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York and William F. Sweeney Jr., the Assistant Director-in-Charge of the New York Office of the FBI announced Thursday that Grafton Thomas has been indicted by a federal grand jury with five counts of willfully causing bodily injury to five victims because of the victims’ religion and five counts of obstructing the free exercise of religion in an attempt to kill, federal hate crimes, related to his alleged machete attack during Hanukkah observances at a rabbi’s home in Monsey, New York, on the night of December 28, 2019.