United States District Court, D. Maryland
L. Hollander United States District Judge
Jackson has petitioned for a writ of coram nobis pursuant to
the All Writs Acts, 28 U.S.C. §1651. ECF 1
(“Petition”). He claims his conviction in
United States v Jackson, Criminal Action BEL-No.
97-246 (D. Md. 2000), was obtained through the use of false
evidence and false testimony. ECF 1 at 6-8. Although Jackson
has completed his term of incarceration as well as his term
of supervised release, he contends that the
“stain” of his conviction is a lifetime handicap
that threatens his social standing and employment
opportunities. Id. at 6.
jury trial in July and August of 2000, Jackson was convicted
of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to
distribute 5 kilograms or more of cocaine and 50 grams or
more of cocaine base. See United States v. Jackson,
Criminal Action No. BEL-97-246. The court sentenced Jackson
on November 17, 2000, to a term of 188 months of imprisonment
and five years of supervised release. ECF 141
(Judgment). Thereafter, Jackson noted an appeal to the
Fourth Circuit. ECF 142.
United States Court of Appeals Fourth Circuit rejected
Jackson's contention that the evidence was insufficient
to convict him. It also rejected Jackson's contention
that the government had created a fatal variance between the
indictment and proof. The Court affirmed the conviction.
See United States v. Jackson, 28 Fed.Appx. 291 (4th
Cir. 2002); see also BEL-97-246, ECF 162; ECF 173.
The Supreme Court denied Jackson's petition for a writ of
certiorari. See Jackson v. United States, 123 S.Ct.
Motion to Vacate
First Motion to Vacate
August 28, 2003, Jackson filed a motion to vacate, set aside,
or correct sentence, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §2255. ECF
174. He claimed, inter alia, that the evidence was
false and insufficient to sustain his conviction.
See Civil Action No. BEL-03-2502 (D. Md. 2006).
Jackson argued that he was denied due process because the
grand jury indicted him on the basis of evidence that proved
inaccurate at trial, and but for this “false'
testimony, he never would have been indicted. The court found
Jackson's claims meritless and denied the motion to
vacate on December 27, 2006. ECF 197; ECF 198; see also
Jackson v. United States, 473 F.Supp.2d 640, 643 (D. Md.
denying the motion to vacate, the Honorable Benson E. Legg
described the procedural background of the case. He recounted
that on June 27, 1997, a federal grand jury handed down a
five-count indictment against Jackson and three codefendants:
Eric Batson; James Kane; and Leroy Yuman. Count I charged the
defendants with conspiracy to distribute cocaine and cocaine
base (“crack”), in violation of 21 U.S.C.
§§ 841(a)(1) & 846. Jackson was not named in
Counts II-V, which charged individual acts of
distribution. 473 F.Supp.2d at 642.4 From June 1999
to March 2000, Jackson and the government explored a plea
bargain and, after the discussions failed, trial was
scheduled for July 31, 2000. Judge Legg wrote, 473 F.Supp.2d
As was customary in the District of Maryland and elsewhere,
the original indictment did not allege a drug quantity. On
June 26, 2000, the Supreme Court handed down its decision in
Apprendi v. New Jersey. On July 20, 2000, the
government obtained a superseding indictment that specified
the drug quantity (more than five kilograms of cocaine and
fifty grams of crack) attributable to the conspiracy charged
in Count I. Other than this addition, and the deletion of the
names of the co-conspirators who had pleaded guilty, the
superseding indictment was identical to the conspiracy count
in the original indictment.[ ]
then moved for a continuance, arguing that the government had
“broadened” its prosecution. The court heard
argument and denied the motion, finding that the superseding
indictment did not raise any additional factual or legal
issues and that Jackson would not be prejudiced by proceeding
to trial as scheduled. Id.
decision rejecting post conviction relief, Judge Legg ruled
that because Jackson did not appeal the issue, he was
procedurally barred from raising it in his post conviction
petition. Contrary to Jackson's claim that there was new
evidence to demonstrate his innocence, Judge Legg found that
the “new” evidence consisted of the grand jury
transcripts that counsel had used to cross-examine the
government's witnesses, and this evidence did not
establish Jackson's innocence. Id. at 643.
Counsel had brought the grand jury testimony to the petit
jury's attention, and they nonetheless convicted Jackson.
Id. Further, Judge Legg noted that, even if
Jackson's claim was not procedurally defaulted, it lacked
merit because a conviction typically cannot be ...