USA v. Jorge Lira-Xochicale, No. 14-10926 (11th Cir. 2014)

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Case: 14-10926 Date Filed: 12/18/2014 Page: 1 of 4 [DO NOT PUBLISH] IN THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE ELEVENTH CIRCUIT ________________________ No. 14-10926 Non-Argument Calendar ________________________ D.C. Docket No. 4:13-cr-00168-BAE-GRS-1 UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff-Appellee, versus JORGE LIRA-XOCHICALE, a.k.a. Roger, a.k.a. Juan De Dios, a.k.a. Juan Diablo, Defendant-Appellant. ________________________ Appeal from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Georgia ________________________ (December 18, 2014) Before HULL, WILLIAM PRYOR and JULIE CARNES, Circuit Judges. PER CURIAM: Case: 14-10926 Date Filed: 12/18/2014 Page: 2 of 4 Jorge Lira-Xochicale appeals his sentence of 66 months of imprisonment imposed for conspiring to transport a person in interstate commerce for purposes of prostitution, 18 U.S.C. § 371, and conspiring to harbor illegal aliens for purposes of financial gain, 8 U.S.C. § 1324(a)(1)(A)(v)(I). Lira-Xochicale argues that his sentence is unreasonable. We affirm. The district court did not abuse its discretion by varying upward 15 months from the high end of Lira-Xochicale’s advisory guideline range of 41 to 51 months of imprisonment. Lira-Xochicale and his coconspirators smuggled women into the United States and used violence, intimidation, and threats of deportation to force them to engage in prostitution. Lira-Xochicale transported at least six prostitutes for the conspiracy, one of whom he called his “wife,” and he converted his apartment into a makeshift brothel by hanging a sheet from the ceiling, placing a mattress on the floor, and providing condoms and containers of personal lubricant. The district court reasonably determined that a sentence of 66 months of imprisonment was required to address the “nature and circumstances of [LiraXochicale’s] offense” and his “history and characteristics,” and “to reflect the seriousness of [his] offense,” “to promote respect for the law[,] . . . to afford some deterrence to criminal conduct[,] and to protect . . . further victims [against similar future] crimes [by Lira-Xochicale] and the members of the conspiracy.” See 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a). And Lira-Xochicale’s 66-month term is substantially less than 2 Case: 14-10926 Date Filed: 12/18/2014 Page: 3 of 4 his statutory maximum sentence of 15 years of imprisonment. See United States v. Dougherty, 754 F.3d 1353, 1362 (11th Cir. 2014). The reasons provided by the district court were sufficiently compelling to justify the extent of its upward variance. See United States v. Irey, 612 F.3d 1160, 1186–87 (11th Cir. 2010) (en banc). The district court explained that the recommended sentencing range failed to account for Lira-Xochicale’s “integral part [in] the conspiracy”; his involvement with “more than eight victims”; his “coordinat[ion] [of] the transportation and delivery of prostitutes with both of the main or lead defendants”; his “transport[ion] [of] many of the prostitutes between various locations throughout Georgia and other states”; and his actions “as a pimp for prostitutes in the . . . Atlanta, Georgia area.” Lira-Xochicale’s sentence is within the range of reasonable sentences for his role in the conspiracy. See id. at 1190. Lira-Xochicale argues that his “role in the offense . . . is not a basis for departing from th[e] [recommended sentencing] range,” United States Sentencing Guidelines Manual § 5H1.7 (Nov. 2013), but his sentence was the result of a variance, not a departure. Lira-Xochicale argues that his conduct “falls squarely within the typical sex trafficking involving undocumented immigrants” and he received an unwarranted variance that deserves the “closer review” called for in United States v. Kimbrough, 552 U.S. 85, 109, 128 S. Ct. 558, 575 (2007), but we disagree. Lira3 Case: 14-10926 Date Filed: 12/18/2014 Page: 4 of 4 Xochicale’s offense differs from a “mine-run case,” id. at 109, 128 S. Ct. at 575, where a conspirator smuggles illegal aliens into the United States and transports them for a prostitution ring. Although it might be commonplace for the conspirator to select a location for the prostitutes and to transport them, it is uncharacteristic for him to act as their pimp. We AFFIRM Lira-Xochicale’s sentence. 4