Tessemae’s LLC, a company that produces natural salad dressings, has sued Mike McDevitt Baltimore, a lawyer and investor based in DC, for fraud and racketeering. According to the lawsuit, McDevitt tried to fraudulently take over Tessemae’s by violating the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO).
The United States District Court in Baltimore received the lawsuit in June 2020. Judge George L. Russell, III rejected a motion by McDevitt and his co-defendants to dismiss the fraud and racketeering claims on March 31, 2021. The surviving claims include RICO, negligence-legal malpractice, fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, and breach of contract.
The lawsuit states that Michael McDevitt and Tandem Legal Group became involved in the management of Tessemae’s in 2017 after providing legal services and investment advice. The lawsuit claims that McDevitt and his co-defendants manipulated Tessemae’s affairs, caused it to incur unnecessary debts, misrepresented its financial situation, and pressured it to sell its assets to them at a low price. Additionally, the lawsuit charges McDevitt with committing multiple acts of wire fraud by sending false emails and documents to investors and creditors of Tessemae’s.
Tessemae’s LLC is a company that produces natural salad dressings and condiments. It was founded by Tesse Vetter, the mother of three athletic boys, who wanted them to eat their veggies while staying healthy. She perfected and created her own salad dressing recipe that was all-natural, which her family and friends loved.
With a motto of “Simplify Food, Amplify Life”, the company has expanded its distribution and product line around the world. As a proud partner of Dr. Axe Keto Diet, the company offers many delicious products that are keto-approved. The company has its base in Essex, Maryland, and has a faithful customer base that values its healthy and natural products.
The lawsuit against McDevitt and his co-defendants will probably go to trial later this year or early next year. Tessemae’s LLC hopes to recover the damages it suffered due to McDevitt’s alleged fraud and racketeering. Any wrongdoing is denied by McDevitt and his co-defendants, who maintain their innocence.
Mike McDevitt and Tessemae’s lawsuit is one of the most high-profile cases in Maryland this year. It involves allegations of RICO violations, fraud, racketeering,negligence-legal malpractice, breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, and RICO violations. Federal crimes that target racketeering activity connected to an enterprise are RICO violations. Racketeering activity includes 35 offenses, such as murder, kidnapping, drug dealing, bribery, mail and wire fraud.
To convict someone of a RICO violation, the prosecutor must prove that the person committed two of these offenses with the same enterprise within 10 years and that the acts affected interstate commerce. RICO has been used for other crimes as well since it was originally passed in 1970 to prosecute the Mafia. RICO violations can be alleged in civil lawsuit cases or for criminal charges.
By sending false emails and documents to Tessemae’s investors and creditors, Michael McDevitt and Defendents engaged in multiple acts of wire fraud, Tessemae’s LLC alleges. Using electronic communication to obtain money or property by deception is a crime that is wire fraud. One of the predicate offenses for RICO violations is wire fraud.