MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDERED that Dominguez's petition for a writ of error coram nobis under28 U.S.C. § 165 1(a) is DENIED and his civil cause is DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE. Signed by Judge David Briones. (mt)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF TEXAS
EL PASO DIVISION
CARLOS DAVID DOMINGUEZ,
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Petitioner Carlos David Dominguez, a former federal prisoner, has asked the Court to vacate his
conviction in cause number EP-08-CR-2397-DB-2 through a petition for a writ of error coram nobis
under 28 U.S.C. § 1651(a).' Dominguez pleaded guilty, pursuant to a plea agreement, to count one of
an indictment charging that he "conspired to attempt to possess ... five kilograms or more of
cocaine," in violation of 21 U.S.C.
846, 841(a)(l), and
He received a sentence of
110 months' imprisonment followed by ten years' supervised release.3 Dominguez filed a motion to
vacate his sentence under 28 U.S.C.
2255 "five years after his offense,"4 which the Court denied as
time barred.5 He has since claimed "[t]he sound reason it was filed outside the limitation period was to
avoid what happened to his brother, see (EP-10-CA-0052-DB), that is to get re-indicted and retried."6
Dominguez has not paid the five dollar filing fee or submitted an application to proceed in
formapauperis. Since the Court will sua sponte dismiss his petition, the Court will also waive the fee.
Superseding Indictment 1, Aug. 27, 2008, ECF No. 26.
J. 1, 2, Apr. 13. 2009, ECF No. 124.
' Pet'r's Pet. 2, Jan. 6, 2017, ECF No. 1. See Mot. to Vacate, Aug. 13, 2013, EP-08-CR-2397DB-3, ECF No. 147.
Mem. Op. & Order, Oct. 11, 2013, EP-08-CR-2397-DB-3, ECF No. 164.
Pet'r's Pet. 2.
He further explained he "patiently waited in prison for 5 years with his fingers crossed hoping to benefit
from the statute of limitations pursuant to 18 U.S.C. 3282." In his instant petition, Dominguez has
asserted that the "indictment's failure to charge an offense constitutes a jurisdictional
"The writ of coram nobis is an ancient common-law remedy designed 'to correct errors of
"[T]he authority to grant a writ of coram nobis is conferred by the All Writs Act, which permits
'courts established by Act of Congress' to issue 'all writs necessary or appropriate in aid of their
respective jurisdictions."0 It provides "an 'extraordinary remedy'... to a petitioner no longer in custody
who seeks to vacate his conviction in circumstances where 'the petitioner can demonstrate that he is
suffering civil disabilities as a consequence of the criminal convictions and that the challenged error is
of sufficient magnitude to justify the extraordinary relief."1' "The writ will issue only when no other
remedy is available and when 'sound reasons exist for failure to seek appropriate earlier relief."12 A
petitioner seeking coram nobis relief must demonstrate (1) there are circumstances compelling the
granting of the writ in order to achieve justice, (2) sound reasons exist for the failure to seek appropriate
earlier relief, and (3) the petitioner continues to suffer legal consequences from his conviction which
Id.; see 18 U.S.C. § 3282 (2012) ("Except as otherwise expressly provided bylaw, no person
prosecuted, tried, or punished for any offense, not capital, unless the indictment is found or the
information is instituted within five years next after such offense shall have been committed.").
502, 507 (1954)).
'°Id at 911
Jan. 6, 2017, ECF No.
Denedo, 556 U.S. 904, 910 (2009) (quoting United States v. Morgan, 346 U.S.
(quoting 28 U.S.C. § 1651(a)).
United States v. Castro, 26 F.3d 557, 559 (5th Cir. 1994) (emphasis added) (citing United
States v. Morgan, 346 U.S. 502, 511(1954) and United States v. Marcello, 876 F.2d 1147, 1154 (5th
United States v. Dyer, 136 F.3d 417, 422 (5th Cir. 1998) (quoting Morgan, 346 U.S. at 512
(alteration in original)).
may be remedied by granting the writ.'3 "In addition, a petitioner bears the considerable burden of
overcoming the presumption that previous judicial proceedings were
In United States
Meacham, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit held that
21 U.S.C. § 846 did "not authorize conspiracy-to-attempt prosecutions."5 It further held "the right to be
free of prosecution under an indictment that fails to charge an offense is a substantial right" which may
"be noticed by the court at any time during the pendency of the proceedings."6 It additionally held
"[t]he objection that the indictment fails to charge an offense is not waived by a guilty plea."7
Accordingly, a district court may raise the issue of whether an indictment fails to charge an offense sua
Dominguez, however, is not entitled to relief through writ of error coram nobis. Although the
Bureau of Prisons released Dominguez from prison on November 25, 2016, he is still serving a ten-year
term of supervised release. A defendant who is subject to supervised release is still in custody.'9 Thus,
Dominguez cannot satisfy the "no longer in custody" requirement for relief.20
' Foont v. United States, 93 F.3d 76, 78-79 (2nd Cir. 1996).
" Dyer, 136 F.3d at 422 (citation omitted).
' United States v. Meacham, 626 F.2d 503, 509 (5th Cir.
see also Fed. R. Crim. P. 12(b)(3)(B) ("[Alt any time while the case is pending, the court
may hear a claim that the indictment or information fails to invoke the court's jurisdiction or to state an
'7Meacham, 626 F.2d at 510.
'81d at 509.
'9Jones v. Cunnigham, 371 U.S. 236, 240-43 (1963).
United States v. Hatten, 167 F.3d 884, 887 n. 6 (5th Cir.1999) (citing Castro, 26 F.3d at 559);
Dyer, 136 F.3d at 422; see also Packv. Yusuff 218 F.3d 448, 454 n.5 (5th Cir.2000) (stating that
"custody" for purposes of 28 U.S.C. § 2255 and 2241 encompasses supervised release).
Accordingly, the Court finds Dominguez is not entitled to the extraordinary remedy of a writ of
error coram nobis. The Court, therefore, enters the following orders:
IT IS ORDERED that the filing fee is WAIVED.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Dominguez's petition for a writ of error coram nobis under
28 U.S.C. § 165 1(a) is DENIED and his civil cause is DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE.
IT IS ALSO ORDERED that all pending motions, if any, are DENIED as moot.
IT IS FINALLY ORDERED that the Clerk shall CLOSE this case.
day of January, 2017.
SENIOR'UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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