United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
OPINION & ORDER DENYING WITHOUT PREJUDICE
GOVERNMENT'S ORAL MOTION FOR EVIDENTIARY HEARING OR SHOW
CAUSE HEARING WITH DEFENDANT'S WIFE
F. Cox United States District Judge.
criminal case before this Court, Defendant Shahid Tahir
(“Tahir”) pled guilty to conspiracy to commit
healthcare fraud and this Court imposed a large fine and
restitution award, in addition to a term of imprisonment of
126 months. The Government is trying to garnish various
accounts and assets held by Tahir, in order to satisfy the
fine and restitution. The Government subpoenaed documents in
the criminal case, that showed that Tahir has a life
insurance policy with a company called “American
General Life Insurance Company.”
Government later filed this miscellaneous action, seeking to
garnish various assets and accounts, including that life
insurance policy. The Government, however, sought and
prepared a writ of garnishment to “AIG” as the
garnishee, without spelling out the actual name of the entity
referred to by that acronym, American International Group,
Inc. (“AIG”). And more importantly, AIG is not
the entity that issued or possessed the policy at issue, so
the Government apparently named the wrong entity in the writ
of garnishment that it requested and obtained. To compound
the problem, the Government did not properly serve AIG with
the writ of garnishment. If it had, AIG would have let the
Government know of the error. By the time AIG learned of the
erroneous writ, through informal communications with the
Government's paralegal, Defendant Tahir had already
cashed out his policy with the correct entity, American
General Life Insurance Company. After AIG learned of the writ
of garnishment, it filed an Answer indicating that it does
not possess any policies belonging to Tahir.
Government requested that this Court hold a show cause
hearing with both AIG and Tahir. The Court held that show
cause hearing on June 29, 2018. At that time, the Government
advised that it had settled its dispute with AIG. Tahir was
represented by counsel at the hearing, who gave an accounting
of how the insurance proceeds that were deposited into
Tahir's joint bank account with his wife were spent.
hearing, Counsel for the Government orally requested that the
Court order Tahir's wife to appear before the Court, or
hold an evidentiary hearing. But Counsel could not explain
what relief it could ask of this Court, as to either Tahir or
his wife, if the insurance proceeds have already been spent.
As such, the Court shall deny the Government's request
Criminal Case Number 15-20351, Defendant Tahir pleaded guilty
to Conspiracy to Commit Health Care Fraud and Wire Fraud, in
violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1349, 18 U.S.C. § 1347(a),
and § 1343. This Court sentenced Tahir to a term of
imprisonment of 126 months. This Court's November 21,
2016 judgment also ordered Tahir to pay a fine of $8, 500,
000.00 and restitution in the amount of $17, 072, 572.98.
Various assets were forfeited but a significant amount
February 14, 2017, the Government issued a subpoena to
“AIG American General” in the criminal case,
seeking any documents relative to financial transactions with
Tahir. (See Ex. 2 to Garnishee's Br.). AIG's
brief states that while “AIG American General” is
not an actual legal entity, because the Government mailed it
to American General's Legal Department, American General
received notice of it and responded to it.
March 7, 2017, paralegal Lisa Hamby at AIG Life and
Retirement's Legal Department in Brentwood, Tennessee
responded to the subpoena on behalf of American General Life.
(See Garnishee's Ex. 3). The documents produced
to the Government showed that Tahir owned a life insurance
policy, Policy Number VL0041394, with American General Life
of Delaware, and that entity merged with “American
General Life Insurance Company” effective December 31,
2012. (See Garnishee's Ex. 1). Thus, it appears
that the policy at issue in this petition is one that Tahir
had with “American General Life Insurance
November 21, 2017, the Government filed this miscellaneous
action in order to obtain writs of garnishment, directed to
various entities that hold assets or amounts of money owed to
November 21, 2017, the Government requested and obtained a
Writ of Garnishment directed to:
AIG HR Shared Services 2727 B. Allen Pkwy Houston, TX 77019
(D.E. No. 13).
Certificate of Service filed by the Government on November
30, 2017 states that on that same date the Government mailed
the writ and related documents, by regular U.S.
mail, to: 1) Tahir by “c/o Harold Gurewitz”
who at that time was not representing in this miscellaneous
case; and 2) AIG HR Shared Services at 2727 B.
Allen Pkwy in Houston, Texas. (D.E. No. 8). Thus, it appears
that the Government did not ...