U.S. v. Angelini, No. 78-2432

CourtUnited States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
Writing for the CourtBefore BROWNING and CHOY; BRUCE R. THOMPSON
Citation607 F.2d 1305
Docket NumberNo. 78-2432
Decision Date09 November 1979
PartiesUNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. Artemio Arthur ANGELINI, Defendant-Appellant.

Page 1305

607 F.2d 1305
UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
Artemio Arthur ANGELINI, Defendant-Appellant.
No. 78-2432.
United States Court of Appeals,
Ninth Circuit.
Nov. 9, 1979.

Page 1307

Theresa A. Kristovich, Asst. U. S. Atty., Los Angeles, Cal., for defendant-appellant.

Fred L. Wright, Torrance, Cal., for plaintiff-appellee.

On appeal from the United States District Court for the Central District of California.

Before BROWNING and CHOY, Circuit Judges, and THOMPSON, * District Judge.

BRUCE R. THOMPSON, District Judge:

Appellant was convicted and sentenced under a single count indictment charging that from on or about January 17, 1977 until December 17, 1977, he did knowingly engage in the business of dealing with firearms without being licensed to do so in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(a)(1).

Appellant's brief, presumably responsive to the mandate of Rule 28 Fed.R.App.P. states the "issues presented for review" as follows: "I. Was defendant in this matter denied a fair trial by a combination of judicial error and prosecutorial misconduct? II. Is the evidence of two sales in an eleven and one-half month period of time insufficient to sustain a conviction as a matter of law?" Such generality in the statement of issues, or specification or assignments of error, can hardly be commended as even a bare compliance with the purpose and intent of Rule 28. As might be foreseen, such absence of analysis and direction was carried forward to the body of the brief in a confusing and disorganized attack upon the conduct of the prosecution and certain rulings of the trial judge. With the assistance of the government's brief, the key claims of error have been ferreted out for consideration.

First it should be noted that the second of appellant's "Questions presented" (supra) has no support in the record whatsoever. True, the government produced evidence of only two specific sales by appellant to undercover ATF agents, one on December 4, 1977, and the other on December 17, 1977. The firearms which were the subject matter of these sales were in evidence. But there was much more evidence to support the conviction. Without attempting to relate it all, it is sufficient to state that the evidence proved that for more than a year appellant had regularly attended gun shows and displayed firearms for sale. In January 1977, an ATF agent interviewed appellant seeking information about the source of a certain pistol and appellant showed him numerous sales slips or invoices documenting sales of firearms. On that occasion appellant was warned that his activities required a license inasmuch as he was engaging in the business of dealing in firearms. About a month later the agent again warned appellant and supplied him with the form of application for a license. On December 17, 1977, at the Orange County Fair Grounds where appellant had firearms on display at the gun show, after the undercover agent had made the specific purchase above noted, other agents moved to appellant's display table and seized nineteen firearms with price tags attached which were received in evidence. In sum, the evidence was overwhelming. We proceed then to a discussion of the alleged errors argued under the pretext that appellant had been denied a fair trial.

Page 1308

Appellant's motion for discovery was heard the day before the trial. The Assistant U. S. Attorney stated that she had furnished defense counsel with the "investigative file" which, she asserted, contained the names of "all known government witnesses." She stated that the two sales and one purchase reflected in that file were the sole specific transactions she intended to introduce, but that evidence of Angelini's other activities, such as his presence at various gun shows, would also be presented.

Appellant charged a breach of what he considered to be the government's commitment when an ATF agent testified that he visited appellant in connection with an investigation of "a convicted felon who was supposedly purchasing firearms at gun shows." The agent also testified that appellant had shown him a number of sales receipts relating to firearms transactions. Appellant's attorney promptly moved to strike the reference to a convicted felon, the motion was granted, and the jury was twice thoroughly admonished to disregard it. In the absence of the jury counsel and the Court at length considered what, if any, restrictions government counsel had placed on the scope of the government evidence, and the motion to strike the reference to sales slips was not granted. There was no error in these rulings. The investigative reports furnished to appellant's counsel disclosed the evidence in question and there is no indication of prosecutorial purpose improperly to bring prejudicial information to the attention of the jury. The rule that the trial judge is the best interpreter of his own orders and pre-trial stipulations approved by him is applicable here. Likens-Foster Monterey Corp. v. United States, 308 F.2d 595, 599 (9th Cir. 1962); Winston v. United States, 342 F.2d 715, 722 (9th Cir. 1965); United States v. Pomares, 499 F.2d 1220, 1223 (2d Cir.), Cert. denied, 419 U.S. 1032, 95 S.Ct. 514, 42 L.Ed.2d 307 (1974). Further, the assertions of prejudice are quite thin. In a similar prosecution reference to a "sniper's gun" was held permissible. United States v. Kowalski, 502 F.2d 203 (7th Cir. 1974), Cert. denied, 420 U.S. 979, 95 S.Ct. 1407, 43 L.Ed.2d 660 (1975).

Also under the rubric of "denial of fair trial" appellant attacks the judge's denial of his motion to strike the testimony of ATF Agent McNab because two-thirds of the agent's rough, contemporaneous notes of his investigation had been lost when his office was moved.

Counsel moved to strike McNab's entire testimony under the interpretation given the Jencks Act, 18 U.S.C. § 3500, in United States v. Harris, 543 F.2d 1247 (9th Cir. 1976). Inasmuch as the notes were lost and not destroyed pursuant to official agency policy as in Harris, Judge Kelleher concluded that there was not "the kind of non-production of notes" to warrant automatically striking the government witness's testimony. Instead, Judge Kelleher stated, prejudice to the defendant must be shown. Noting the thoroughness with which defense counsel had impeached the witness with the omissions in his report, that McNab's testimony was largely corroborated by that of other witnesses, and that the missing notes did not appear to contain exculpatory Brady material, the motion was denied. No error was committed in failing to strike Agent McNab's testimony. Cf., United States v. Marques, 600 F.2d 742 (9th Cir. 1979).

The appellant next contends that he was unfairly surprised and denied his rights to effective cross-examination when the government called on rebuttal...

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21 practice notes
  • U.S. v. Gering, No. 82-3072
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
    • September 19, 1983
    ...it. Johnson was a rebuttal witness. The government is not ordinarily required to disclose such witnesses. United States v. Angelini, 607 F.2d 1305, 1308-09 (9th Cir.1979). 2. Cross-Examination of Mrs. Gering. Gering objected to the government's cross-examination of Mrs. Gering regarding Ger......
  • U.S. v. Frazier, No. 01-14680.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (11th Circuit)
    • October 15, 2004
    ...offered during government's case-in-chief); United States v. Barrett, 766 F.2d 609, 617 (1st Cir.1985) (same); United States v. Angelini, 607 F.2d 1305, 1308-09 (9th Cir.1979) (same). Thus, so long as this testimony was properly characterized as rebuttal, Rule 16 did not require the governm......
  • United States v. Mastro, Crim. No. 83-00143-01.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 3th Circuit. United States District Court (Eastern District of Pennsylvania)
    • September 16, 1983
    ...971 (1983); United States v. Jackson, 352 F.Supp. 672, 674 (S.D.Ohio 1972), aff'd 480 F.2d 927 (6th Cir.1973); United States v. Angelini, 607 F.2d 1305, 1309 (9th Cir.1979); See United States v. Masters, 622 F.2d 83, 88 (4th Cir.1980) (Government may satisfy burden by showing defendant able......
  • United States v. Afyare, No. 3:10-cr-00260
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Middle District of Tennessee
    • June 12, 2013
    ...v. Frazier, 387 F.3d 1244, 1269 (11th Cir.2004); United States v. Barrett, 766 F.2d 609, 617 (1st Cir.1985); United States v. Angelini, 607 F.2d 1305,1308-09 (9th Cir.1979). First, rebuttal evidence is limited to "new" defense evidence or theories. United States v. Bland, 2007 WL 2781114, a......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
21 cases
  • U.S. v. Gering, No. 82-3072
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
    • September 19, 1983
    ...it. Johnson was a rebuttal witness. The government is not ordinarily required to disclose such witnesses. United States v. Angelini, 607 F.2d 1305, 1308-09 (9th Cir.1979). 2. Cross-Examination of Mrs. Gering. Gering objected to the government's cross-examination of Mrs. Gering regarding Ger......
  • U.S. v. Frazier, No. 01-14680.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (11th Circuit)
    • October 15, 2004
    ...offered during government's case-in-chief); United States v. Barrett, 766 F.2d 609, 617 (1st Cir.1985) (same); United States v. Angelini, 607 F.2d 1305, 1308-09 (9th Cir.1979) (same). Thus, so long as this testimony was properly characterized as rebuttal, Rule 16 did not require the governm......
  • United States v. Mastro, Crim. No. 83-00143-01.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 3th Circuit. United States District Court (Eastern District of Pennsylvania)
    • September 16, 1983
    ...971 (1983); United States v. Jackson, 352 F.Supp. 672, 674 (S.D.Ohio 1972), aff'd 480 F.2d 927 (6th Cir.1973); United States v. Angelini, 607 F.2d 1305, 1309 (9th Cir.1979); See United States v. Masters, 622 F.2d 83, 88 (4th Cir.1980) (Government may satisfy burden by showing defendant able......
  • United States v. Afyare, No. 3:10-cr-00260
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Middle District of Tennessee
    • June 12, 2013
    ...v. Frazier, 387 F.3d 1244, 1269 (11th Cir.2004); United States v. Barrett, 766 F.2d 609, 617 (1st Cir.1985); United States v. Angelini, 607 F.2d 1305,1308-09 (9th Cir.1979). First, rebuttal evidence is limited to "new" defense evidence or theories. United States v. Bland, 2007 WL 2781114, a......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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