Abbe Lowell was quoted in a March 16 story by the Legal Times regarding a move made by Congress to strengthen a law restricting gifts to public officials. On March 12 the Senate Judiciary Committee approved legislation to broaden the ban on the giving or receiving of illegal gratuities. The bill would also extend statues of limitation and increase potential prison time for some crimes, and appropriate $100 million over four years for corruption charges. Two D.C. cases however limited the existing gratuities ban; precedent the white-collar defense bar doesn't want erased. Mr. Lowell commented, "When courts rule that certain minimums are required to protect citizens in criminal law, Congress shouldn't then try to legislate away those protections."