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150146 - People v Paul Charles Seewald

The People of the State of Michigan,
Bruce H. Edwards
(Appeal from Ct of Appeals)
(Wayne – Braxton, M.)
Paul Charles Seewald,
Keith W. Madden


Defendant Paul Seewald, formerly the district director for U.S. Representative Thaddeus McCotter, was convicted of election-law violations after he falsely signed and submitted nominating petitions in connection with McCotter’s 2012 bid for re-election. Seewald pled guilty to nine misdemeanor counts of signing a nominating petition with a name other than his own, and was sentenced to two years’ probation. In addition to the misdemeanor counts, Seewald was also charged with the felony of conspiracy “to commit a legal act in an illegal manner,” MCL 750.157a(d). He challenged the conspiracy charge, arguing that there was no “legal act” involved. The circuit court judge agreed and dismissed the charge; the Court of Appeals affirmed in a split unpublished per curiam opinion. At issue is whether Seewald committed a legal act in an illegal manner, in violation of MCL 750.157a(d).