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United States v. Jewell

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
532 F.2d 697 (1976)



Jewell (defendant) was convicted of knowingly transporting 110 pounds of marijuana worth $6,250 in a secret compartment between the trunk and the rear seat of an automobile, from Mexico into the United States. At trial, Jewell testified that he did not know the drugs were there. There was circumstantial evidence that showed Jewell had knowledge of the drugs and was therefore lying. And there was also circumstantial evidence that showed although Jewell knew of the presence of the secret compartment and that it likely contained marijuana, he deliberately avoided positive knowledge of the presence of the drugs in order to avoid responsibility in the event he was caught. The trial judge refused Jewell’s request to instruct the jury that, in order to convict, Jewell must have had to “absolutely, positively” know the marijuana was in the secret compartment. Jewell appealed the conviction.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Browning, J.)

Dissent (Kennedy, J.)

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