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United States v. Mohamed

United States District Court, Fourth Circuit

December 31, 2013

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
v.
YAGOUB M. MOHAMED

MEMORANDUM OPINION

ROBERT E. PAYNE, Senior District Judge.

Yagoub M. Mohamed, a former federal inmate, filed this Petition for a Writ of Error Coram Nobis. For the reasons set forth below, the Petition for a Writ of Error Coram Nobis will be denied.

I. PROCEDURAL HISTORY

Pursuant to a plea agreement, Mohamed pled guilty to conspiracy to commit mail and health care fraud (Count One) and money laundering (Count Fifty-One). (Oct. 15, 2001 Tr. 11-12 39.) On January 11, 2002, the Court sentenced Mohamed to serve forty-one months in prison and pay restitution in the amount of $750, 000. (Jan. 11, 2002 Tr. 7, 9).

By Memorandum Opinion and Order entered on June 15, 2004, the Court denied a 28 U.S.C. ยง 2255 motion filed by Mohamed. (ECF Nos. 82-83.)

On March 31, 2010, the Supreme Court held that the Sixth Amendment requires an attorney for a criminal defendant to provide advice about the risk of deportation arising from a guilty plea. See Padilla v. Kentucky 559 U.S. 356 , 373-74 (2010).

In August of 2011, Mohamed filed his present Petition for a Writ of Error Coram Nobis ("Petition") with this Court. (ECF No. 97.) In his Petition, Mohamed requests that the Court "overturn his conviction by guilty plea and his sentence on the ground of ineffective assistance of counsel for failing to advise him of the possible immigration consequences of his guilty plea, in violation of Padilla...." (Pet. 1.)[1] In response, the Government requests that, inter alia, the Court delay ruling on the Petition until the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit rules on whether Padilla applies retroactively to cases on collateral review. (Gov't's Resp. 9, ECF No. 100.) On February 20, 2013 the Supreme Court concluded that the new rule announced in Padilla does not apply retroactively to cases on collateral review. Chaidez v. Un.itPH States , 133 S.Ct. 1103, 1107 (2013).

II. ANALYSIS

An individual seeking coram nobis relief must satisfy four threshold prerequisites:

First, a more usual remedy (such as habeas corpus) must be unavailable; second, there must be a valid basis for the petitioner having not earlier attacked his convictions; third, the consequences flowing to the petitioner from his convictions must be sufficiently adverse to satisfy Article III's case or controversy requirement; and, finally, the error that is shown must be "of the most fundamental character."

Bereano v. United States , 706 F.3d 568, 576 (4th Cir. 2013) (quoting United States v. Akinsade , 686 F.3d 248, 252 (4th Cir. 2012)). As explained below, Mohamed fails to satisfy the fourth requirement because the rule announced in Padilla fails to apply to cases on collateral review.

A. General Application Of The New Rule Doctrine

New rules of constitutional criminal procedure generally are not applicable to cases on collateral review. Teague v. Lane , 489 U.S. 288, 310 (1989). This principle protects the societal interest in the finality of convictions. Id . "No one, not criminal defendants, not the judicial system, not society as a whole is benefitted by a judgment providing that a man shall tentatively go to jail today, but tomorrow and every day thereafter his continued incarceration shall be subject to fresh litigation.'" Id. at 309 (quoting Mackey v. United States , 401 U.S. 667, 691 (1971) (Harlan, J., concurring in judgments in part and dissenting in part)).

The Supreme Court has prescribed a three-step process for determining whether a constitutional rule of criminal procedure applies to a case on collateral review. ...


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