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United States v. Brown

United States District Court, First Circuit

July 8, 2013

United States of America
v.
Sean Brown.

ORDER

STEVEN J. McAULIFFE, District Judge.

Re: Document No. 157, Motion for Withdrawal of Plea

Ruling: Granted. As discussed at the hearing on defendant's motion, he does raise one meritorious claim - and offers a "fair and just reason" to withdraw his pleas of guilty. That is, defendant says he was, through no fault of his own, unaware of the court's ruling on his motion in limine seeking to preclude the government from introducing similar conduct evidence (possession of drugs with intent to distribute) during its case in chief (which motion was granted before his pleas). He only learned of the ruling after his pleas were accepted, but before sentencing, and he made a reasonably timely motion to withdraw. While it is arguable whether the ruling in defendant's favor substantially alters the government's prospects of proving the charged offenses beyond a reasonable doubt at trial, defendant credibly claims that had he been aware of the ruling, his own assessment of the risks of trial in this case would have been materially different, and he would have put the government to its proof, rather than enter pleas of guilty. Under those circumstances, I find that defendant has ...


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