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Lewis v. United States
United States Supreme Court
445 U.S. 55 (1980)
In 1961, George Lewis Jr. (defendant) was convicted of the felony of breaking and entering with intent to commit a misdemeanor. In 1977, Lewis was charged with possession of a firearm in violation of a federal gun-control statute prohibiting possession of firearms by convicted felons. Before trial in federal district court, Lewis’s counsel learned that Lewis may not have had legal representation for the 1961 proceeding, which, if true, would have the effect of making the conviction invalid. The court rejected this claim, holding that Lewis was still a convicted felon for purposes of the federal gun-control statute. Lewis appealed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, which affirmed. Lewis then appealed to the United States Supreme Court, which granted certiorari.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Blackmun, J.)
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