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United States v. Zuniga

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
6 F.3d 569 (1993)


Facts

The federal government (plaintiff) prosecuted Juan Carlos Zuniga (defendant) for bank robbery, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2113(a). The federal district court trial evidence established that on the day of the robbery, Zuniga, Andres Gonzales Portal, and Damaso Olivera drove to the bank together. Ten minutes later, Zuniga emerged from the bank and the three men drove away. Portal and Olivera testified that Zuniga entered the bank alone, and denied having any knowledge of the robbery. Although other evidence linked Zuniga to the crime, Zuniga claimed that Portal was the real robber, and his wife testified that Zuniga was home at the time of the robbery. The judge denied Zuniga's motion to instruct the jury that they must acquit Zuniga unless they found they inferred from evidence that, beyond a reasonable doubt, Zuniga's alibi was false and that he was actually at the bank when it was robbed. The jury convicted Zuniga, and he appealed to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Pregerson, J.)

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