United States v. Khalil, No. 15-3819 (2d Cir. 2017)Annotate this Case
At issue in this appeal was whether defendant should have been acquitted of transporting an alien within the United States for profit in violation of 8 U.S.C. 1324(a)(1)(A)(ii) and 1324(a)(1)(B)(i). The Second Circuit reversed the conviction, holding that the evidence was insufficient to prove that defendant transported an alien "in furtherance of" the alien's illegal stay in the United States, as required by section 1324(a)(1)(A)(ii) and by the district court's jury instructions. Although the Government did present evidence that defendant drove the alien to Pennsylvania Station in order to facilitate the alien's entry into Canada using a fraudulent passport, such a showing alone cannot establish a direct and substantial relationship between the transportation and an act in furtherance of the alien's unlawful presence in the United States. The Second Circuit remanded with instructions to dismiss the count and for de novo sentencing.