United States v. Olaniyi, 120219 FED11, 18-14622

Docket Nº:18-14622
Opinion Judge:PER CURIAM
Party Name:UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. OLAYINKA OLANIYI, Defendant-Appellant.
Judge Panel:Before WILLIAM PRYOR, GRANT and BLACK, Circuit Judges.
Case Date:December 02, 2019
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit



OLAYINKA OLANIYI, Defendant-Appellant.

No. 18-14622

United States Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit

December 2, 2019


Appeal from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia No. 1:15-cr-00457-SCJ-JSA-2

Before WILLIAM PRYOR, GRANT and BLACK, Circuit Judges.


Olayinka Olaniyi appeals his convictions for conspiracy to commit wire fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1349, computer fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1030(a)(4), and aggravated identity theft, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1028A. First, Olaniyi contends the district court erred by failing to suppress (a) all tangible evidence seized during the search of his residence in Malaysia, and (b) his statements to U.S. law enforcement officials during his arrest and interrogation. Second, he asserts the evidence was insufficient for a reasonable juror to conclude beyond a reasonable doubt he knew that Tasha Story, the victim of one of his aggravated identity theft counts, was a real person. Finally, he argues the district court abused its discretion by denying his motion for mistrial because he was prejudiced by evidence of uncharged criminal conduct. After review, we affirm.


A. Motion to Suppress

1. Tangible evidence

"The general rule is that evidence obtained from searches carried out by foreign officials in their own countries is admissible in United States courts, even if the search would not otherwise comply with United States law or the law of the foreign country." United States v. Emmanuel, 565 F.3d 1324, 1330 (11th Cir. 2009). We have recognized two narrow exceptions to this rule. Id. "The first exception is that evidence from foreign searches is inadmissible if the conduct of the foreign officials during the search 'shocks the judicial conscience.'" Id. This exception derives from a federal court's inherent supervisory powers over the administration of federal justice. Id. The "shock the conscience" standard is not well-defined, but it "is meant to protect against conduct that violates fundamental international norms of decency." Id. at 1331. The second exception is based on a defendant's Fourth Amendment rights and provides "evidence from foreign searches is subject to the exclusionary rule if American law enforcement officials substantially participated in the search or if the foreign officials conducting the search were actually acting as agents for their American counterparts." Id. at 1330.

The district court did not err by refusing to suppress the evidence seized during the search of Olaniyi's residence, specifically the HP laptop and Olaniyi's cell phone. See id. at 1330 (explaining a district court's denial of a motion to suppress presents a mixed question of fact and law, and we review the factual findings for clear error and the interpretation and application of law de novo). The general rule is this evidence is admissible because it was seized by foreign officials in their own countries, and Olaniyi is a non-resident with no connections to the United States. As to the two exceptions identified in Emmanuel, Olaniyi failed to show the conduct of the Royal Malaysian Police (RMP) officers shocked the judicial conscience. Even assuming a beating occurred, the evidence supports it occurred after the RMP officers had seized the items, suggesting the beating did not effectuate the seizure. Moreover, while the alleged beating may violate American norms of decency, Olaniyi did not show it violates international norms of decency. See id. at...

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