November 25th, 2019
United States v. Johnson
Opinion Date: November 22, 2019
Judge: Kurt D. Engelhardt
Areas of Law: Criminal Law
The Fifth Circuit affirmed defendant's sentence imposed after he pleaded guilty, pursuant to a plea agreement, to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute fentanyl, methamphetamine, and cocaine, and possession of a firearm and ammunition by a felon. The court held that, although the district court erroneously stated that defendant "had dope" in describing his 2006 arrest, there was no additional, obvious evidence indicating that the district court mistakenly believed defendant had three drug convictions or that the district court's decision to impose an upward variance was affected by such a belief. Therefore, the district court's single misstatement, when considered in the context of the record as a whole, did not affect defendant's substantial rights, and thus defendant failed to satisfy the third prong of the plain error test.
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