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United States v. Blankenship

United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
970 F.2d 283 (1992)


Facts

A family-run drug ring operating in Illinois manufactured and sold methamphetamine. The family moved labs frequently to avoid detection. A nephew, William Zahm, offered to pay Thomas Lawrence (defendant) $1,000 to rent a trailer home for one day. Lawrence, who knew that Zahm intended to make methamphetamines in the trailer, accepted $100 as a deposit and covered the floor of the trailer with plastic to prevent damage caused by the cooking process. Lawrence later reneged on the deal and had the chemicals and equipment removed from the trailer. Drug enforcement agents eventually infiltrated one of the  methamphetamine rings operated by Zahm. Zahm provided information to police that resulted in the indictment of 18 individuals, including Lawrence and Richard Blankenship (defendant), another nephew who helped distribute the drugs. Lawrence was convicted by a jury in district court for conspiracy to manufacture and distribute methamphetamine. Lawrence appealed.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Easterbrook, J.)

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  • A "yes" or "no" answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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