698 F.2d 227 (5th Cir. 1983), 82-1368, United States v. Dreyfus-de Campos

Docket Nº:82-1368
Citation:698 F.2d 227
Party Name:UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. Olga Guadalupe DREYFUS-de CAMPOS, Jose Raul Veliz-Valladres and Cesar Agusto Aranda-Arguello, Defendants-Appellants.
Case Date:January 28, 1983
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
 
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Page 227

698 F.2d 227 (5th Cir. 1983)

UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee,

v.

Olga Guadalupe DREYFUS-de CAMPOS, Jose Raul Veliz-Valladres

and Cesar Agusto Aranda-Arguello, Defendants-Appellants.

No. 82-1368

United States Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit

January 28, 1983

Page 228

Joseph A. Calamia, El Paso, Tex. (court-appointed), for Dreyfus-de campos.

Charles Michael Mallin, El Paso, Tex. (court-appointed), for Veliz-Valladres and Aranda-Arguello.

Sidney Powell, Asst. U.S. Atty., San Antonio, Tex., for plaintiff-appellee.

Appeals from the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas.

Before CLARK, Chief Judge, POLITZ and HIGGINBOTHAM, Circuit Judges.

POLITZ, Circuit Judge:

Convicted of conspiracy to possess cocaine with intent to distribute and of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, in violation of 21 U.S.C. Secs. 846 and 841(a)(1), Olga Guadalupe Dreyfus-de Campos, Jose Raul Veliz-Valladres and Cesar Agusto Aranda-Arguello appeal, challenging: (1) the status of the Sierra Blanca, Texas checkpoint as a functional equivalent of the border, and (2) the sufficiency of the evidence. Finding no merit in either assignment of error, we affirm.

Factual Context

On the morning of March 5, 1982, Dreyfus, Veliz and Aranda were proceeding east on Interstate 10 when their vehicle was stopped at a U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint located four miles west of Sierra Blanca, Texas. Upon learning that all occupants of the vehicle were aliens, the border patrol officer asked to examine their immigration papers. When only Aranda could produce the documents the officer directed the vehicle to a secondary inspection site.

During the ensuing questioning Veliz stated that he had entered the United States the previous month, that his passport had been left in Los Angeles and that the only document in his possession was a temporary identification card issued by the state of California. This card, issued in 1980, contradicted Veliz's statement regarding his date of entry. The officer grew suspicious; Veliz noticeably nervous. Veliz confessed that more papers were in the trunk of the auto, papers which disclosed that Veliz had remained in the United

Page 229

States beyond the period permitted by the immigration authorities. While examining Veliz's papers the officer saw Veliz toss onto the rear seat a shaving kit which the...

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