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7th Circuit upholds firearm conviction

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The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a man’s conviction of possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug-trafficking crime, finding there was sufficient evidence to support the conviction.

In United States of America v. Gregory G. Eller, No. 10-2465, police found marijuana plants and other items behind a steel door in Gregory Eller’s basement and a loaded gun under the couch in his living room. Eller challenged the charge, arguing he used the gun for protection because the neighborhood was not safe.

On appeal, the judges rejected his claim that the conviction should be reversed because 18 U.S.C. Section 924(c) is unconstitutionally vague as applied. Eller contended that the “in furtherance of” nexus between the drugs and the firearm requires a greater level of participation than proving the “during and in relation to” prong. Eller claimed that in order to prove the former, the government must show the gun was more than merely available, that it actually advanced the drug-trafficking operation. Other jurisdictions have rejected Section 924(c) void-for-vagueness challenges, as did the 7th Circuit.

The government provided sufficient evidence to satisfy the “in furtherance of” nexus required to convict Eller, and the District Court did not commit plain error when it allowed the government to present the testimony of a special agent with extensive experience working in drug-related cases.

 

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  1. I'm not sure what's more depressing: the fact that people would pay $35,000 per year to attend an unaccredited law school, or the fact that the same people "are hanging in there and willing to follow the dean’s lead in going forward" after the same school fails to gain accreditation, rendering their $70,000 and counting education worthless. Maybe it's a good thing these people can't sit for the bar.

  2. Such is not uncommon on law school startups. Students and faculty should tap Bruce Green, city attorney of Lufkin, Texas. He led a group of studnets and faculty and sued the ABA as a law student. He knows the ropes, has advised other law school startups. Very astute and principled attorney of unpopular clients, at least in his past, before Lufkin tapped him to run their show.

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  4. Aristotle said 350 bc: "The most hated sort, and with the greatest reason, is usury, which makes a gain out of money itself, and not from the natural object of it. For money was intended to be used in exchange, but not to increase at interest. And this term interest, which means the birth of money from money, is applied to the breeding of money because the offspring resembles the parent. Wherefore of an modes of getting wealth this is the most unnatural.

  5. Oh yes, lifetime tenure. The Founders gave that to the federal judges .... at that time no federal district courts existed .... so we are talking the Supreme Court justices only in context ....so that they could rule against traditional marriage and for the other pet projects of the sixties generation. Right. Hmmmm, but I must admit, there is something from that time frame that seems to recommend itself in this context ..... on yes, from a document the Founders penned in 1776: " He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good."

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