USA v. Esse Mazaheri
UNPUBLISHED OPINION FILED. [16-50278 Affirmed ] Judge: TMR , Judge: PRO , Judge: JWE Mandate pull date is 05/11/2017 for Appellant Esse Osameh Mazaheri [16-50278]
Date Filed: 04/20/2017
IN THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS
FOR THE FIFTH CIRCUIT
United States Court of Appeals
April 20, 2017
Lyle W. Cayce
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
ESSE OSAMEH MAZAHERI, also known as Esse O. Mazaheri, also known as
Esee Osameh Mazaheri, also known as Osameh Mazaheri,
Appeal from the United States District Court
for the Western District of Texas
USDC No. 5:12-CR-788-2
Before REAVLEY, OWEN, and ELROD, Circuit Judges.
PER CURIAM: *
Esse Osameh Mazaheri appeals the sentence imposed following his jury
conviction for conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute marijuana in
violation of 21 U.S.C. §§ 841(a)(1), (b)(1)(C) and 846. Mazaheri argues that the
district court erred by enhancing his offense level pursuant to U.S.S.G.
§ 3B1.1(a) for his role as an organizer or leader. He additionally asserts that
Pursuant to 5TH CIR. R. 47.5, the court has determined that this opinion should not
be published and is not precedent except under the limited circumstances set forth in 5TH
CIR. R. 47.5.4.
Date Filed: 04/20/2017
the district court erred in holding him accountable for more than 700 kilograms
The district court’s determination that a defendant is an organizer or
leader under § 3B1.1(a) is a factual determination that we review for clear
error. United States v. Cabrera, 288 F.3d 163, 173 (5th Cir. 2002) (per curiam).
In determining a defendant’s role in the offense, “a district court is permitted
to draw reasonable inferences from the facts, and these inferences are factfindings reviewed for clear error.” United States v. Caldwell, 448 F.3d 287, 290
(5th Cir. 2006). A factual finding is not clearly erroneous if it “is plausible in
light of the record as a whole.” Id. A close examination of the record in this
case, including the transcript of the trial, shows that there was sufficient
evidence to support the district court’s leadership adjustment. Accordingly,
the district court’s finding that Mazaheri was a leader or organizer for the
purposes of § 3B1.1(a) was not clearly erroneous.
We also review the district court’s determination regarding the quantity
of drugs for clear error. United States v. Schorovsky, 202 F.3d 727, 729 (5th
Cir. 2000). In overruling Mazaheri’s objection to the drug quantity, the district
court found that “[t]here was substantial evidence at trial to substantiate that
the amount between 700 kilograms to 1,000 kilograms of marijuana [was]
being transported by Mr. Mazaheri as part of that conspiracy to distribute that
he was involved in.” Once again, a close examination of the record reveals that
the district court’s finding regarding the quantity of marijuana was “plausible
in light of the record as a whole.” See Caldwell, 448 F.3d at 290. Accordingly,
the district court’s finding that Mazaheri was accountable for at least 700
kilograms of marijuana was not clearly erroneous.
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