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Home / Case Digests / Court of Appeals — Insurance Fraud — Arson: People v. Abraham

Court of Appeals — Insurance Fraud — Arson: People v. Abraham

New York State Court of Appeals

Insurance Fraud — Arson

Inconsistent Verdict — Legally Sufficient Evidence

People v. Abraham
No. 192
Judge Lippman

Background: The defendant was charged with arson and insurance fraud. The defendant argued that because he was acquitted of arson, the prosecution could not establish that he knew the cause of the fire or lied to the insurance company. At issue on appeal is whether a factual inconsistency in a jury verdict acquitting a defendant of one count, but convicting him of another renders the record evidence legally insufficient to support the conviction.

Ruling: The Court of Appeals affirmed. The court held that the remaining evidence in the record could lead a rational jury to conclude that in order to solve his financial problems, the defendant lied about the cause of the fire to his insurance company in an effort to collect wrongfully on the policy.

Jonathan S. Fishbein for the appellant; Christopher D. Horn for the respondent