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New Hampshire v. Sinbandith

New Hampshire Supreme Court
729 A.2d 994 (1999)


Facts

The State of New Hampshire (plaintiff) charged Bounleuth "Pheng" Sinbandith (defendant) with seven indictments relating to the sale of crack cocaine. An undercover detective made arrangements with Sinbandith to purchase the drug on several occasions. The detective gave money to Sinbandith, who drove to a separate location with another person. When Sinbandith returned, the other person handed the drugs to the detective. The indictments regarding the sale alleged that Sinbandith acted “in concert with” another to knowingly sell or dispense illegal drugs. The indictments also separately noted that Sinbandith was being charged as an accomplice. During the trial, Sinbadith moved to dismiss the indictments, arguing that they failed to charge the correct mens rea for accomplice liability. The indictments charged Sinbandith with knowingly committing the crime. Accomplice liability requires the mens rea of purposefully committing the crime. The trial court denied the motion, and a jury convicted Sinbandith. Sinbandith appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Brock, C.J.)

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