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Decisions in Deadly Arson Appeal, and Medical Malpractice, and Reach-and-Apply Action

By FindLaw Staff on May 03, 2010 4:43 PM

Borges v. Serano-Isern, No.09-1699, concerned a plaintiffs' medical malpractice suit against a doctor and a hospital, claiming that the doctor's negligence in his delay in calling for and performing the C-section resulted in numerous physical and neurological injuries to their daughter.  However, because plaintiffs have failed to present any developed argumentation with respect to the Hospital's liability, they have waived their claim that the district court erred in granting the Hospital's motion for summary judgment.  Furthermore, plaintiffs' argument that the doctor breached his duty of care through delay in calling for and performing the C-section fails because they offerd no evidence that the doctor could or should have known, at the relevant time, that the daughter suffered from either Bradycardia or a cord prolapse.     

Inatosca v. Step Plan Services, Inc., No. 09-1038, concerned a plaintiffs' reach-and-apply action to freeze pendente lite certain funds in the hands of third-parties, due to one or more of other defendants who owe money judgments to the plaintiffs in an underlying lawsuit.  Because the likelihood of success finding by the district court is more than adequately supported, and the court made a more than adequate assessment on affidavits that present defendant likely is an alter ego of the defendants in the underlying suit, district court's grant of preliminary injunction in favor of the plaintiffs is affirmed. 

In US v. Aranjo, No.08-2307, the court faced a challenge to convictions of a former CEO of a federal credit union and her husband (a treasurer at the credit union's related entity) for conspiracy to embezzle and to make false entries, and other related crimes.  In rejecting both defendants' Batson claims, the court held that the district judge did not clearly err in accepting the proffered reasons with respect to the government's peremptory challenge of an African-American juror.  Furthermore, the husband's remaining claims are rejected as sufficient evidence supported his convictions.   

US v. Guzman, No. 08-1693, involved a conviction and life sentence of defendant for his role in an arson that killed a mother and her infant daughter.  In affirming the conviction, the court held that there was no error in the denial of defendant's motion to suppress statements made to ATF agents, and that there was no error in the court's exclusion of hearsay statements offered by defendant and limits on cross-examination.  The court also held that the district court correctly found a jurisdictional nexus with interstate commerce.  Lastly, with respect to the life sentence, the court held that the defendant was properly sentenced as the district court's failure to explain the sentence was not plain error, correctly applied the sentencing guidelines and the life sentence was substantively reasonable.   

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