Which Statement Or Statements Best Describe Lawyers Who Work For The Government??


The court also found that Mr. Rojas asserted an affirmative defense denying the government’s claim that he had violated 18 U.S.C § 371 by transporting, possessing and firing a firearm during and in relation to his drug trafficking offense (18 U.S.C § 924(c)(1)) because the evidence was insufficient to prove this element of the crime beyond reasonable doubt.[5] The Fifth Circuit has held that where there is any dispute about whether an offense described by statute contains elements requiring proof beyond reasonable doubt, it will apply de novo review on appeal to determine if trial error occurred.[6] When reviewing de novo, we independently assess all facts in the light most favorable to support a verdict for conviction, giving deference only where proper fact-finding would have been required under Fed R Crim P 706(3). We must determine whether sufficient evidence exists from which a jury could find guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.[7] Considering these factors—including “the strength of the prosecution’s case with regard to each essential element … as well as … credibility determinations[8] —we conclude that there is legally sufficient evidence from which it may be inferred that Mr. Rojas possessed or fired his shotgun after being convicted of violating 18 U.S.C § 924(c)(1).[9] Thus we do not need to address possible errors at sentencing.[10]

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