Argued: September 28, 2018
from the United States District Court for the Eastern
District of Virginia, at Alexandria. Claude M. Hilton, Senior
District Judge. (1:17-cr-00001-CMH-1)
Marcus McNichols, WILLIAMS & CONNOLLY LLP, Washington,
D.C., for Appellant.
Sean Dwyer, OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY, Alexandria,
Virginia, for Appellee.
C. Kamens, Federal Public Defender, Cadence A. Mertz,
Assistant Federal Public Defender, OFFICE OF THE FEDERAL
PUBLIC DEFENDER, Alexandria, Virginia; Martha C. Kidd,
WILLIAMS & CONNOLLY LLP, Washington, D.C., for Appellant.
J. Boente, United States Attorney, Nathaniel Smith III,
Assistant United States Attorney, OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES
ATTORNEY, Alexandria, Virginia, for Appellee.
WILKINSON and HARRIS, Circuit Judges, and William L. OSTEEN,
Jr., United States District Judge for the Middle District of
North Carolina, sitting by designation.
HARRIS, CIRCUIT JUDGE
convicted appellant Lamine Camara of criminal conspiracy for
his involvement in a scheme to acquire and resell luxury
vehicles using stolen identities. Ray Ekobena orchestrated
this scheme, and Camara's indictment charged him with
conspiring "with Ray Ekobena and others, known
and unknown," to violate three different federal laws.
J.A. 9 (emphasis added). Following Camara's trial, the
district court instructed the jury using the same language.
During deliberations, however, the jury submitted a written
question, asking, "Do we need to agree the defendant was
conspiring with Ray specifically or conspiring in
general?" J.A. 617. The district court responded,
"[T]he government has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt
that the defendant was conspiring specifically with Ray
or other known or unknown co-conspirators."
J.A. 628 (emphasis added).
identifies two putative constitutional errors based on this
supplemental instruction. First, he contends it
constructively amended the indictment in violation of the
Fifth Amendment by allowing the jury to convict him of a
conspiracy that did not involve Ekobena. Second, he argues
that it violated his Sixth Amendment right to a trial in a
district in which the crime took place, on the theory that
Ekobena provided the only connection between his crime and
the district in which the government prosecuted him. In the
alternative, Camara raises two challenges to the district
no error, we affirm both Camara's conviction and his
case against Camara centered on his involvement in Ray
Ekobena's luxury car scheme. Ekobena used stolen
identities to submit fraudulent loan applications to car
dealerships. Once a dealership approved his loan
applications, Ekobena relied on third parties to deliver the
vehicles to Washington, D.C. Ekobena then resold those
vehicles at a steep discount, mostly because he did not have
valid title to transfer to a subsequent buyer, as is ...