Unpublished Disposition, 921 F.2d 282 (9th Cir. 1990)

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US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit - 921 F.2d 282 (9th Cir. 1990)

UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee,v.Fernando MARQUEZ-BARRAZA, Defendant-Appellant.

No. 89-10495.

United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit.

Argued and Submitted Nov. 6, 1990.Decided Dec. 12, 1990.

Before ALARCON, BRUNETTI and KOZINSKI, Circuit Judges.


Defendant Marquez-Barraza appeals his conviction for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and possession with intent to distribute marijuana. We affirm.

Defendant argues that the trial court erred in permitting the prosecutor to use certain documents, including a forged driver's license and a forged birth certificate, to attack defendant's credibility. Defendant contends that the prosecutor violated F.R.Evid. 404(b) by using these documents to show that defendant had a bad character and was therefore more likely to have committed the crimes with which he was charged.

Even if the district court's ruling was erroneous, we may not reverse if the error was harmless. United States v. Brown, 880 F.2d 1012, 1016 (9th Cir. 1989). In this case, it is more probable than not that any error in the introduction and use of the documents did not affect the jury's verdict. Id. (citation omitted). The mother of defendant's child was stopped driving across the border in a van containing over two hundred pounds of marijuana. When agents picked up defendant for questioning, he lied about his name. A United States customs agent testified that defendant confessed that he had been employed to run a load of dope to San Fernando, California; that he had been paid $1000 up front and was to receive $4000 more when the van was delivered to San Fernando.

Given that the jury already had before it evidence that defendant had lied about his name, and that substantial evidence linked defendant to the transportation of the marijuana, the introduction and use of additional evidence showing that defendant had lied about his name in the past was harmless.



This disposition is not appropriate for publication and may not be cited to or by the courts of this circuit except as provided by 9th Cir.R. 36-3