Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

United States v. Pizarro

United States District Court, E.D. Louisiana

July 31, 2017

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
v.
DAN PIZARRO

         SECTION "F"

          ORDER AND REASONS

          MARTIN L. C. FELDMAN UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         Before the Court is the government's motion in limine for a determination that certain records qualify as business records under Federal Rule of Evidence 803(6) and notice of intent to offer affidavits under Federal Rule of Evidence 902(11). For the following reasons, the motion is GRANTED.

         Background

         Dan Pizarro is charged in Count One of a Two-Count Superseding Indictment with conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of a substance containing a detectable amount of methamphetamine and a quantity of heroin, in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 846. The government has also filed a Two-Count Bill of Information to establish prior convictions in accordance with 21 U.S.C. § 851(a). Count One of the Bill establishes a prior conviction in the United States District Court for the District of Hawaii; Pizarro was convicted of two counts of conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 846. He was sentenced to a term of imprisonment of 90 months as to each count, to be served consecutive; this conviction is final. Count Two of the Bill establishes a conviction for possession with the intent to distribute marijuana in the Criminal District Court for Orleans Parish; Pizarro was sentenced to a term of imprisonment of five years, suspended, with five years of probation. This conviction is also final.

         The United States seeks a preliminary determination as to the admissibility or authentication of certain documents it plans to use in its case-in-chief. No opposition papers were submitted.

         I.

         Rule 104 of the Federal Rules of Evidence obliges the Court to “decide any preliminary question about whether . . . evidence is admissible.” Fed.R.Evid. 104(a). In making this preliminary determination, “the court is not bound by evidence rules, except those on privilege.” Id. This rule applies to all preliminary determinations, including resolution of whether documents fall within the business records exception to the hearsay rule. See In re Japanese Elec. Prods. Antitrust Litig., 723 F.2d 238, 287-88 (3d Cir. 1983) (holding that the determination is made by the judge, rather than the jury, and that the court is not confined to admissible evidence), rev'd on other grounds sub nom, 475 U.S. 574 (1986). Such pretrial determination advances the elimination-of-unjustifiable-expense-and-delay purposes of the Federal Rules of Evidence. See Fed.R.Evid. 102 (“These rules should be construed so as to administer every proceeding fairly, eliminate unjustifiable expense and delay, and promote the development of evidence law, to the end of ascertaining the truth and securing a just determination.”).

         The prerequisites for admissibility under the business records exception to the hearsay rule, Rule 803(6), must be established by a preponderance of the evidence. See Bourjally v. United States, 483 U.S. 171, 175 (1987). Rule 803(6) provides that the following is not excluded by the rule against hearsay:

(6) Records of a Regularly Conducted Activity.

         A Record of an Act, event, condition, opinion, or diagnosis if:

(A) the record was made at or near the time by -or from information transmitted by- someone with knowledge;
(B) the record was kept in the course of a regularly conducted activity of a business, organization, occupation, or ...

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.