United States v. Brewington, No. 18-1357 (10th Cir. 2019)Annotate this Case
Kenneth Brewington told potential investors that he owned or controlled billions in assets that didn’t exist. At trial, Brewington acknowledged that much of what he had said was untrue. But he argued to the jury that he had been duped. "The jury was apparently unimpressed," and found him guilty on eleven counts of: (1) conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud; (2) mail fraud; (3) wire fraud; (4) conspiracy to commit money laundering; (5) money laundering; and (6) monetary transactions in property derived from specified unlawful activity. Brewington was sentenced to 70 months in prison. Brewington appealed the convictions based on the district court’s: (1) exclusion of emails that he had sent and received and (2) restriction of testimony by another person duped by the same man who had allegedly duped Brewington. The Tenth Circuit rejected these challenges, finding Brewington never offered some of the emails into evidence, so the court never had an opportunity to consider their admissibility. The district court did exclude three other emails. But if the court did err in these rulings, the errors would have been harmless because the district court ultimately allowed Brewington to testify about the emails, and the evidence of his guilt was overwhelming.