United States v. Latorre-Cacho, No. 15-1295 (1st Cir. 2017)Annotate this Case
The First Circuit vacated Appellant’s conviction of one count of conspiracy in violation of 18 U.S.C. 1962, a provision of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization (RICO) Act, holding that a portion of the jury instructions in which the district court incorrectly described what constitutes “racketeering activity” under the Act warranted reversal.
On appeal, Appellant argued, among other things, that his conviction must be overturned because of the mistaken instructions that “firearms” constitute “racketeering activity.” The First Circuit concluded that Appellant’s challenge to the jury instructions had merit and thus did not reach his other challenges. The court held that this was the rare case of an unpreserved challenge to a clear and obvious instructional error that met the plain error standard.
The court issued a subsequent related opinion or order on November 6, 2017.