Paul J. Larkin ,Jr., Public Choice Theory and Overcriminalization, 36 Harv. J.L. & Pub. Pol’y 715, 724–25 (2013).
 As Professor Stephen Smith has explained, the courts have been willing participants in the expansion of criminal law, particularly federal criminal law. See Stephen F. Smith, Overcoming Overcriminalization, 102 J. Crim. L. & Criminology 537 (2012).
 Consider in that regard the morphing of the federal mail fraud statute from a law designed to redress use of the mail to defraud private parties into a mechanism for imposing federal ethical standards on private parties as well as state and local government officials. See Skilling v. United States, 130 S. Ct. 2896, 2926–33 (2010); id. at 2935–38 (Scalia, J., dissenting).
 See, e.g., Trustees of Dartmouth College v. Woodward, 17 U.S. 518, 636 (1819) (“A corporation is an artificial being, invisible, intangible, and existing only in contemplation of law. Being the mere creature of law, it possesses only those properties which the charter of its creation confers upon it, either expressly, or as incidental to its very existence.”).
 See, e.g., Anonymous Case (No. 935), 88 Eng. Rep. 1518, 1518 (K.B. 1701) (“A corporation is not indictable, but the particular members of it are.”); State v. Great Works Milling & Mfg. Corp., 20 Me. 41, 44 (1841) (“It is a doctrine then, in conformity with the demands of justice, and a proper distinction between the innocent and the guilty, that when a crime or misdemeanor is committed under color of corporate authority, the individuals acting in the business, and not the corporation should be indicted.”). In 1909, however, the law changed dramatically when the Supreme Court ruled that a corporation be held vicariously liable under the criminal law for its employee’s misconduct. See New York Cent. & Hudson River R.R. v. United States, 212 U.S. 481 (1909). For an excellent discussion of the legal and policy issues raised by the prosecution of corporations, see James R. Copland, Regulation by Prosecution: The Problems with Treating Corporations as Criminals, Manhattan Institute for Policy research No. 13 (Dec. 2010), available at http://www.manhattan-institute.org/html/cjr_13.htm (last visited July 10, 2013).
 See, e.g., Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, ch. 675, 52 Stat. 1040 (1938) (codified, as amended, at 21 U.S.C. § 301 et seq. (2012)); United States v. Park, 421 U.S. 658 (1975) (company president can be held liable for presence of rodent droppings at a company warehouse); Richard A. Samp & Corey L. Andrews, Restraining Park Doctrine Prosecutions Against Corporate Officials Under the FDCA, 13 Engage 19 (Oct. 2012)
 Larkin, supra note 1, at 787–88 (footnote omitted); see, e.g., United States v. Bank of New England, 821 F.2d 844, 856 (1st Cir. 1987); Kathleen B. Brickey, Environmental Crime 25 (2008).
 It might be impossible as a practical matter for the Justice Department to prosecute a sitting Attorney General in the absence of public outrage, but there is no criminal law principle barring such a prosecution. If the United States as sovereign can prosecute the President, see United States v. Nixon, 418 U.S. 683, 692–97 (1974), it can prosecute the Attorney General. In fact, it once prosecuted a former Attorney General. See Lawrence Meyer, John N. Mitchell, Principal in Watergate, Dies at 75, Wash. Post, Nov. 10, 1988, available at http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/national/longterm/watergate/stories/mitchobit.htm (last visited July 10, 2013). Vicarious liability is just one route to that goal.
 Cf., e.g., Connick v. Thompson, 131 S. Ct. 1350 (2011) (district attorney cannot be held civilly liable under the Civil Rights Act of 1871, ch. 31, 17 Stat. 13 (codified, as amended, at 42 U.S.C. § 1983 (2012)), for a prosecutor’s failure to disclose exculpatory evidence absent proof that he knew or should have known of the failure and the need for training).
 Cf., e.g., Groh v. Ramirez, 540 U.S. 551 (2004) (federal agent liable for participating in a search under a clearly invalid search warrant); Burns v. Reed, 500 U.S. 478 (1991) (prosecutor is entitled to absolute immunity for participation in probable cause hearing but not for giving advice to the police); Anderson v. Creighton, 483 U.S. 635 (1987) (law enforcement officer is entitled to qualified immunity only for conduct that reasonably could be deemed lawful).
 See, e.g., Peter Baker & Jonathan Weisman, White House Says It Didn’t Loop Obama in on I.R.S. Inquiry, N.Y. Times, May 21, 2013, available at http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/21/us/politics/white-house-says-obama-was-kept-out-of-loop-on-irs-inquiry.html?src=twr (last visited July 10, 2013); W.W. Houston, Obamacare and the IRS: Spanner in the Works? The Economist, May 16, 2013, available at http://www.economist.com/blogs/democracyinamerica/2013/05/obamacare-and-irs (last visited July 10, 2013); Office of The Inspector General, Department of Justice, A Review of ATF’s Operation Fast and Furious and Related Matters (Sept. 2012); Henry F. Schuelke III & William Shields, In re Special Proceedings: A Report to Hon. Emmett G. Sullivan of Investigation Conducted Pursuant to the Court’s Order, dated April 7, 2009 (D.D.C. Nov. 14, 2011); Office of Professional Responsibility, Department of Justice, Report: Investigation of Allegations of Prosecutorial Misconduct in United States v. Theodore F. Stevens, Crim. No. 08-231 (D.D.C. 2009) (EGS) (Aug. 15, 2011).
 Of course, in some instances, there is. Ambulances may run stop signs en route to a hospital with a patient in critical condition; DEA agents may buy drugs in an undercover operation; police officers may use force that otherwise would constitute battery in order to make an arrest; and so forth. See, e.g., Wayne R. LaFave, Criminal Law § 10.7, at 590–600 (5th ed. 2010) (discussing defenses available to law enforcement officers). Status as a federal officer is not, however, a license to break the law. See, e.g., United States v. Nixon, 418 U.S. 683, 692–97 (1974); supra note 8.
 See Speech or Debate Clause, U.S. Const. art I, § 6, cl. 1 (“[F]or any Speech or Debate in either House, [members of Congress] shall not be questioned in any other Place.”).
 The law of entrapment is instructive in this regard. Entrapment allows a defendant to defend against a charge by claiming that he was not predisposed to commit a crime and did so only because of the government’s efforts to induce him to break the law. See, e.g., Jacobson v. United States, 503 U.S. 540, 548–49 (1992). But entrapment may not be available as a defense to every crime. There may be some crimes and some conduct so wicked that a defendant cannot blame the government for persuading him to commit them. See Sorrells v. United States, 287 U.S. 432, 451 (1932) (ruling that a defendant generally can raise a defense of entrapment but noting that the defense may not be universally applicable: “We have no occasion to consider hypothetical cases of crimes so heinous or revolting that the applicable law would admit of no exceptions. No such situation is presented here. The question in each case must be determined by the scope of the law considered in the light of what may fairly be deemed to be its object.”). The same principle should apply in cases where a defendant raises the defense of reliance on official authority. A person should not be able to avoid conviction for following a patently unreasonable order from a government official, such as a command to lynch a suspect in custody awaiting trial. See United States v. Shipp, 214 U.S. 386, 388 (1909).
 The Due Process Clause prohibits the government from holding a party criminally responsible for engaging in facially reasonable conduct that a government official has expressly authorized him to perform. See, e.g., United States v. Pennsylvania Indus. Chemical Corp., 411 U.S. 655, 670–75 (1973); Cox v. Louisiana, 379 U.S. 559, 568–74 (1965); Raley v. Ohio, 360 U.S. 423, 425–26 (1959).