Monday, June 20, 2005

Court affirms conviction & sentence

The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the conviction and 30-year prison sentence of Alonzo Ellerman, who was found guilty of distributing meth and illegally possessing a firearm.

Government had no cooperation agreement with defendant, and it was not barred from indicting him or using evidence he provided; court did not err in refusing to give defendant's proposed multiple conspiracy instruction as the instruction was not supported by the evidence; nor did the court err in refusing defendant's proposed instruction regarding his being an addict and not a drug dealer; district court did not err in sentencing defendant as a career offender or in imposing an enhancement for obstruction of justice (interfering with the investigation by revealing an officer's identity); applying the Pirani plain error analysis, defendant was not entitled to Booker relief because he failed to demonstrate a reasonable probability that the district court would have imposed a lesser sentence under an advisory guidelines scheme.

Here is the court's opinion.