United States v. Amede, No. 18-11172 (11th Cir. 2020)Annotate this Case
The Eleventh Circuit affirmed defendant's conviction and sentence for attempted possession with intent to distribute five kilograms of cocaine. The court held that the district court did not abuse its discretion in admitting the three recorded phone calls as co-conspirator statements made during and in furtherance of the drug conspiracy; the district court correctly omitted the word "willfully" from the jury instruction and did not constructively amend the indictment by doing so; the evidence was sufficient to support the conviction; the district court did not abuse its discretion in limiting defendant's testimony and his cross-examination of the lead case agent; and assuming arguendo that the district court abused its discretion as to defendant's duress defense, any error was harmless. Finally, the court held that the record as a whole demonstrates that defendant not only waived his right to counsel, but also attempted to delay and manipulate the sentencing proceedings.