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Mauer v. Minn., No. 09-3623

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By FindLaw Staff on November 17, 2010 1:26 PM

Child Pornography Habeas Petition Denial Affirmed

In Mauer v. Minn., No. 09-3623, a petition under 28 U.S.C. section 2254 alleging that plaintiff's due process rights were violated by his state conviction for possession of child pornography, the court affirmed the denial of the petition where 1) petitioner's arguments were contrary to the clearly established rule, announced in Osborne and other cases, that a narrowly construed statute "may be applied to conduct occurring prior to the construction, provided such application affords fair warning to the defendant"; and 2) petitioner's counsel's assertion that he might have chosen a jury trial had he been aware that the statute would be construed in the way the state supreme court did was purely speculative.

As the court wrote:  "Helmut Horst Mauer brought this action under 28 U.S.C. § 2254 alleging that his due process rights were violated by his state conviction for possession of child pornography. The federal district court1 denied relief but granted him a certificate of appealability on the issue of whether the Minnesota Supreme Court violated his due process rights by remanding his case to the trial court without vacating his conviction or granting him a new trial."

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