US v. Lincoln Moquete


UNPUBLISHED PER CURIAM OPINION filed. Originating case number: 1:13-cr-00419-WDQ-2. Copies to all parties and the district court. [999948085]. [15-4805]

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Appeal: 15-4805 Doc: 36 Filed: 10/17/2016 Pg: 1 of 4 UNPUBLISHED UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE FOURTH CIRCUIT No. 15-4805 UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff – Appellee, v. LINCOLN NORMANDO MOQUETE, Defendant - Appellant. Appeal from the United States District Court for the District of Maryland, at Baltimore. William D. Quarles, Jr., District Judge. (1:13-cr-00419-WDQ-2) Submitted: October 13, 2016 Decided: October 17, 2016 Before NIEMEYER, DUNCAN, and WYNN, Circuit Judges. Affirmed by unpublished per curiam opinion. C. Justin Brown, BROWN & NIETO, LLC, Baltimore, Maryland, for Appellant. Rod J. Rosenstein, United States Attorney, Christopher J. Romano, Assistant United States Attorney, Baltimore, Maryland, for Appellee. Unpublished opinions are not binding precedent in this circuit. Appeal: 15-4805 Doc: 36 Filed: 10/17/2016 Pg: 2 of 4 PER CURIAM: Lincoln Normando Moquete appeals from the criminal judgment convicting him intent distribute to of conspiracy five to distribute kilograms or and more of possess with cocaine and possession with intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine and sentencing him to a 144-month term of imprisonment. Moquete argues that the court erred in failing to issue a jury instruction regarding witness hostility or bias toward Moquete. He also contests the quantity of drugs attributed to him at sentencing. We affirm. First, Moquete objects to the district court’s refusal to give a proposed jury instruction on witness hostility and bias. “We review for abuse of discretion the district court’s denial of . . . proposed jury instructions.” 777 F.3d 684, 688 (4th Cir. discretion in this regard. its discretion” by United States v. Sonmez, 2015). We see no abuse of A “district court d[oes] not abuse refusing a proposed instruction that was “clearly covered by the instructions given,” United States v. Green, 599 F.3d 360, 378 (4th Cir. 2010), just because “a more specific instruction might have been desirable to” the defendant, id. (quoting United States v. Patterson, 150 F.3d 382, 388 (4th instruction general were Cir. seemed biased 1998)). to be Moquete’s that against the him. 2 reasoning testifying He did not for the witnesses in advance any Appeal: 15-4805 Doc: 36 Filed: 10/17/2016 Pg: 3 of 4 evidence related to a particular witness. The district court instructed the jury on evaluating the credibility of witnesses. There was simply no basis on which to find an abuse of discretion. Moquete also challenges the district court’s calculation of the drug weight, asserting that the court improperly credited the testimony allegedly of vague, two coconspirators inconsistent, and whose testimony lacking credibility. was In reviewing the district court’s calculations under the Sentencing Guidelines, “we review the district court’s legal conclusions de novo and its factual findings for clear error.” United States v. Manigan, 592 F.3d 621, 626 (4th Cir. 2010) (internal quotation marks omitted). We will “find clear error only if, on the entire evidence, we are left with the definite and firm conviction that a mistake has been committed.” Id. at 631 (internal quotation marks and alterations omitted). The district attributable evidence. 2011). to court the need only defendant by find a the drug preponderance quantity of the United States v. Bell, 667 F.3d 431, 441 (4th Cir. The court, therefore, “must only determine that it was more likely than not that the defendant was responsible for at least the drug quantity attributed to him.” Kiulin, 360 F.3d 456, 461 (4th Cir. 2004). 3 United States v. Having reviewed the Appeal: 15-4805 Doc: 36 Filed: 10/17/2016 Pg: 4 of 4 record on appeal, we conclude that the district court did not clearly err in calculating the drug weight. Accordingly, we affirm the judgment. We dispense with oral argument because the facts and legal contentions are adequately presented in the materials before this court and argument would not aid the decisional process. AFFIRMED 4

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