Block on Trump's Asylum Ban Upheld by Supreme Court
In US v. Allen, No. 09-2539, the Seventh Circuit faced a challenge to a conviction of defendant for advertising, transporting, and possessing child pornography, claiming that the district court erred in denying his for-cause challenge to a prospective juror and for admitting portion of his chat log where he claimed to have molested minors. In affirming the conviction, the court held that the district court was within its discretion in determining that the prospective juror's prior experience of a kidnapping attempt on her daughter would not impede her ability to decide the case fairly. With respect to the chat log evidence, the court held that even if it was an error for the district court to admit potions of chat log into evidence, the error was harmless because the government presented plenty of other evidence cumulative of the proper purposes for which they otherwise may have been admitted.
US v. Kruse, No. 09-4077, concerned a challenge to a conviction of defendant for conspiracy to defraud the United States and for filing false income tax returns. The court rejected defendant's claim that the government did not prove that his conduct was willful as the district court could have inferred that defendant acted willfully based on his own contradictions and personal withdrawals from the business that greatly exceeded his reported income. Furthermore, the evidence at trial was sufficient to find defendant guilty of the charged offenses beyond a reasonable doubt, including his conviction for conspiracy with the tax preparer.