United States v. Walser

3 F.3d 380 (1993)

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United States v. Walser

United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
3 F.3d 380 (1993)

  • Written by Sharon Feldman, JD

Facts

Walser (defendant) and her husband (the Walsers) farmed soybeans. The Walsers were alleged to have grown and sold more soybeans than they reported to the Southern Crop Insurance Corporation (SCIC) and were indicted for submitting fraudulent crop insurance claims to the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation (FCIC) and the SCIC. At trial, the Walsers claimed that the crops were an uninsured crop from another farm and that they had notified the SCIC of the uninsured crop through an SCI-013 form. At trial, Walser introduced two documents through the testimony of an FCIC claims specialist: (1) a letter dated July 14, 1986, addressed to the claims specialist and stating it was accompanied by a copy of the SCI-013 form that was attached to her acreage report, which indicated that the soybeans at issue were uninsured crops planted on another farm; and (2) the SCI-013 form referred to in the letter. The Walsers were acquitted. A government agent examined the SCI-013 form after the trial and contacted the printing company identified on the form. The printing company advised the agent that it did not print and deliver that SCI-013 form until a week after the date used by Walser on the form she sent to the FCIC claims specialist. Walser was indicted for perjury and aiding and abetting by knowingly and willingly causing the FCIC claims specialist to present false evidence under oath. Walser was convicted and appealed, arguing that she could not be convicted under the perjury statute, 18 U.S.C. § 1623, because she was never placed under oath and thus had no legal capacity to commit the crime of perjury.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Dubina, J.)

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