United States v. Ladue, No. 16-2299 (8th Cir. 2017)Annotate this Case
The Eighth Circuit affirmed the district court's denial of defendant's motion to withdraw his guilty plea to two counts of aggravated sexual abuse. The court held that the district court did not violate Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 11(b)(1)(I), because no mandatory minimum penalty applied in this case. Even if Rule 11 required the district court to advise defendant that he was not eligible for probation, a departure from Rule 11 requirements was harmless error because it did not affect his substantial rights. In this case, an attorney advised defendant before he entered his guilty plea that probation was not an option, and defendant sought to withdraw his plea long before he learned he was not eligible for probation so he could not show that the district court's failure to advise that probation was unavailable caused his decision to plead guilty.