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US v. De Oliveira, No. 10-1281

By FindLaw Staff on October 20, 2010 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Alien Harboring Conviction Affirmed

In US v. De Oliveira, No. 10-1281, the court affirmed in part defendant's conviction and sentence for harboring illegal aliens, holding that 1) the court had no reason to doubt the district court's factual determination that, had defendant's counsel coerced defendant into pleading guilty, defendant's very involved wife would have notified the lower court of the issue earlier; and 2) severe overcrowding together with lack of heat and furnishings presented an inherent health-and-safety risk to each of the occupants such that the application of an enhancement was warranted.  However, the court reversed in part where the workers' status as illegal aliens did not alone justify a vulnerable-victim enhancement under the facts of this case.

As the court wrote:  "Marcio De Oliveira ("De Oliveira") pled guilty to two counts of harboring
illegal aliens, in violation of 8 U.S.C. § 1324. Prior to sentencing, De Oliveira moved to withdraw his guilty pleas; however, the district court denied his motion and ultimately sentenced him to fifty-one months of imprisonment after finding several sentencing enhancements. De Oliveira now appeals, challenging the denial of his motion and three of the enhancements. We affirm in part, reverse in part, and remand for resentencing."

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