The Legal Side of Private Security: Working through the Maze

By Leo F. Hannon | Go to book overview

Federal laws offer a wide range of protections, particularly if the criminal activity is carried out in part beyond the state's jurisdiction. Further, as in the mail and wire fraud cases, the protections will be extended beyond property to the intangible right of "honest services."

Choosing the appropriate source of legal relief requires analyzing the problem at hand and determining who is involved, where the activity is taking place, the mechanics involved in the compromise, and the relief desired. Are the expenses and time involved in pursuing a civil RICO action justified if the culprits are destitute and the compromised interests can be retrieved and protected through a Hobbs Act or mail fraud case? Would a wire fraud case be a more appropriate vehicle than a civil trade secret action, particularly if inadequate security measures had been taken to protect the property involved? To know the individual laws in isolation is interesting, but to understand how they interrelate and can be used to solve different problems is productive. It is also necessary to understand how roles can change. For example, if law enforcement is introduced, the game will be played under a different set of investigative rules.

Legislatures and courts normally will, over time, respond to societal changes. The congressional reaction in plugging up the loophole in the mail and wire fraud statutes created by the Supreme Court's decision in the McNally case on nonproperty intangibles is an example of quick relief. 93 The gradual establishment of parameters in the RICO statute is an example of slow relief. The thing to keep in mind is that these changes invariably involve the balancing of numerous rights, and what appears to make great sense to business will not necessarily be considered by the courts or legislatures to be good for the country as a whole.


NOTES
1.
35 U.S.C. Sec. 101.
2.
R. Dorr & W. Eigles, "Resolving Claims to Ownership of Software and Computer Stored Data--The Importance of Temporary Restraining Orders and Preliminary Injunctions", 5 Computer L.J.1 ( 1984); V. Neumeyer, "Software Copyright Law: The Enforceability Sham", 35 Loyola L. Rev.485 ( 1990).
3.
D. Fetterley, "Historical Perspectives on Criminal Laws Relating to the Theft of Trade Secrets", 25 Bus. Law. 1535 ( 1970).
4.
Annot., 84 A.L.R. 3d967, "Misappropriation of Trade Secret" ( 1978); Sokolik, "Computer Crime--The Need for Deterrent Legislation", 2 Computer L.J.353 ( 1980).
5.
Epstein & Levi, "Protecting Trade Secret Information: A Plan for Proactive Strategy", 43 Bus. Law. 887 ( 1988).
6.
Fetterley, "Historical Perspectives" at 1536, 37; Wolk, "Some Legal Aspects of Industrial Security", 9 Prac. Law. No. 4, 87 ( 1963).
7.
Vandevoot, "Trade Secrets: Protecting a Very Special Property," 26 Bus. Law. 681 ( 1971).
8.
Epstein & Levi, "Protecting Trade Secret Information"; Silberberg & Lardiere,

-209-

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The Legal Side of Private Security: Working through the Maze
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Introduction xi
  • 1 - Private Security and Law Enforcement 1
  • Notes 15
  • 2 - A View of the Maze of Laws That Impact Private Security 17
  • Notes 34
  • 3 - Security-Related Matters in Collective Bargaining 37
  • Notes 54
  • 4 - Labor-Related Demonstrations, Picketing, and Handbilling 57
  • Notes 79
  • 5 - Arbitration 81
  • Notes 102
  • 6 - The Employment World Outside of the National Labor Relations Act and Arbitration 105
  • 7 - Liability for Assaults 139
  • 8 - Individual Rights of Non-Employees and Protection of Property and Business Interests 161
  • Notes 184
  • 9 - Protecting Intangible Property 187
  • Notes 209
  • 10 - The Special Nature of Some Security Functions 213
  • Notes 223
  • Conclusion 225
  • Bibliography 229
  • Index 231
  • About the Author 237
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