United States v. Stanford, No. 15-30127 (5th Cir. 2016)Annotate this Case
Defendant appealed his conviction and sentence stemming from his involvement in a synthetic marijuana distribution ring. Based on the intervening decision in McFadden v. United States, announced after defendant's trial, the court reversed the conviction of conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance analogue (CSA) because the district court’s error, in ruling that the government was not required to prove that defendant knew the synthetic marijuana compound distributed by the conspirators was a CSA, was not harmless, despite the decision to send the issue to the jury via a special interrogatory. The court affirmed defendant's conviction and sentence on all other counts and remanded.