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Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Ind. Decisions - 7th Circuit decides one Indiana case today

In Mendoza v. U.S. (ND Ind., Miller), an 18-page opinion, Judge Tinder writes:

Gabriel Mendoza was sentenced to multiple terms of life imprisonment after he was convicted of a drug conspiracy and other drug offenses in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Indiana. Mendoza appealed, challenging the sufficiency of the evidence as to the conspiracy conviction and his sentence, and we affirmed. United States v. Mendoza, 401 F. App’x 128 (7th Cir. 2010). Mendoza then petitioned for relief from his convictions under 28 U.S.C. § 2255, claiming that he was denied due process when the district court moved one of his Spanish-speaking interpreters from the defense table to interpret for a Spanish-speaking witness at trial. He also argued that his trial counsel provided ineffective assistance in failing to object to this interpreter arrangement and failing to translate discovery and adequately review it with him. The district court held an evidentiary hearing at which Mendoza, his tri-al counsel, and the three interpreters who participated in the trial all testified. Following the hearing, the court denied Mendoza’s § 2255 petition, concluding that he was not deprived of due process nor provided ineffective assistance of counsel. We affirm.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on June 18, 2014 02:23 PM
Posted to Ind. (7th Cir.) Decisions