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United States v. Poynter

United States District Court, District of Columbia

December 7, 2012

UNITED STATES of America,
v.
William F. POYNTER, Defendant.

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[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

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Anthony F. Scarpelli, U.S. Attorney's Office, Washington, DC, for United States of America.

Danielle Courtney Jahn, Federal Public Defender, Washington, DC, for Defendant.

MEMORANDUM OPINION

EMMET G. SULLIVAN, District Judge.

Defendant William F. Poynter, who is proceeding pro se, has filed a motion and various supplemental motions for a new trial pursuant to Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 33. Defendant has also filed a separate motion to correct alleged inaccuracies in transcripts of his trial and a subsequent hearing, and several other procedural motions regarding his receipt of trial transcripts and his legal representation. For the reasons explained below, defendant's motions will be DENIED.

I. BACKGROUND

On March 1, 2007, defendant William Poynter was charged with one count of Conspiracy to Launder Monetary Instruments,

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in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1956(h). Two alleged co-conspirators, James Franklin " Frank" Smith and Christopher Cook, were also charged. On December 12, 2007, a jury returned a verdict of guilty against Mr. Poynter.[1] On April 2, 2008, prior to sentencing, defendant requested and received the assistance of a new court-appointed attorney.

On September 12, 2008, defendant, through counsel, filed a motion for a new trial, citing ineffective assistance of trial counsel. Defendant subsequently filed several lengthy pro se supplements to his motion for a new trial. In those supplemental motions, defendant made many arguments, including that he was entitled to a reversal of his conviction and a new trial because prosecutors engaged in misconduct and presented false evidence. Defendant also argued that his alleged co-conspirator, Frank Smith, should not have been permitted to avoid testifying in Poynter's trial by exercising his Fifth Amendment rights. On November 6, 2008, the Court held a hearing on defendant's motions for a new trial and heard testimony from several witnesses. The Court subsequently denied defendant's motions. On February 13, 2009, defendant was sentenced to 108 months incarceration and 24 months of supervised release.

After defendant was sentenced, he continued filing various requests for relief from this Court. On April 6, 2009, defendant filed a pro se motion to vacate his sentence pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255, followed by a pro se motion to reduce his sentence filed on June 16, 2009. Several months later, defendant filed a request to withdraw all of his pending pro se motions and " any motion which may have been characterized as a motion under Section 2255." ECF No. 141.

On December 7, 2010, defendant filed the first of many motions for a new trial under Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 33. Those motions are the subject of this Memorandum Opinion. In his first motion, defendant argues that his conviction was obtained through the prosecution's tampering with evidence, perjury by various witnesses, and improper jury instructions given by the Court. See ECF No. 144. On December 17, 2010, defendant filed a pro se " Motion for Reversal of Conviction or a New Trial" that was substantially similar to his December 7 filing and which appeared to only contain minor edits. ECF No. 146. Pursuant to the Court's Order, the government responded to ...


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