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Jimenez v. United States

United States District Court, S.D. New York

June 12, 2015

BENJAMIN JIMENEZ, Movant,
v.
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Respondent.

OPINION & ORDER

KATHERINE B. FORREST, District Judge.

The Court has reviewed movant Benjamin Jimenez's pro se motion to vacate, set aside, or correct his sentence pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255, which was timely filed on February 16, 2015.[1] (15-cv-1493 ECF No. 1 ("Pet.").) Jimenez argues that his attorney misinformed him of the elements required to convict him under 18 U.S.C. § 924(c) of aiding and abetting the use, carrying, and possession of a firearm during a crime of violence, and that, but for that failure, there is a reasonable probability that Jimenez would not have plead guilty and would instead have proceeded to trial, which in Jimenez's view would have resulted in a different outcome for this proceeding. (See Pet. at 14, 16-17.)

For the reasons set forth below, Jimenez's motion is DENIED.

I. BACKGROUND

On August 2, 2013, Jimenez pled guilty pursuant to a plea agreement ("the Plea Agreement") to conspiracy to commit Hobbs Act robbery in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1951 ("Count Two") and to using, carrying, and possessing a firearm in relation to a crime of violence and aiding and abetting same in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 924(c)(1)(A) ("Count Three"). (13-cr-58 ECF No. 24; 13-cr-58 ECF No. 142 ("Plea Tr.") at 24:2-6.)

During his plea, Jimenez either answered in the affirmative to the following questions or affirmed his understanding of the following facts:

• He had sufficient time to discuss the case, the charges against him, and the consequences of pleading guilty with his counsel; and he was "very satisfied" with his counsel's representation. (Plea Tr. at 8:12-9:6.)
• He understood the various constitutional rights he was waiving by deciding to plead guilty. (Plea Tr. at 9:18-12:19.)
• He understood that, in Count Three, he was being "charged with the use, carry[ing] and possession of a firearm, " and "for aiding and abetting others in the same in connection with those robberies." (Plea Tr. at 13:3-7.)
• He understood that, for Count Three, there is a statutory maximum of life imprisonment; a mandatory minimum of five years' imprisonment to run consecutively with any sentence imposed for Count Two; and a maximum fine "of the greatest of $250, 000, twice the gross pecuniary gain derived from the offense, or twice the gross pecuniary loss to persons other than [himself] resulting from the offense" plus a "$100 special assessment and restitution, if ordered by the Court." (Plea Tr. at 9:3-6, 14:4-24.)
• He understood the Plea Agreement, reviewed it with his counsel, and willingly signed it. (Plea Tr. at 18:8-21.)
• He understood that, under the Plea Agreement, he waived any right to a direct appeal or collateral challenge. (Plea Tr. at 19:7-14.)

Jimenez also admitted that he intended to rob drug dealers for drugs and money and that in furtherance of that crime, on January 9, 2013, he "possessed a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle, [with] the intent to use the firearm to rob drug dealers." (Plea Tr. at 21:18-24.) He further admitted to his possession of a firearm, confirmed the veracity of his statements, and acknowledged the wrongfulness of his actions. (Plea Tr. 21:25-22:8, 22:21-23.)

The Court, satisfied that Jimenez was in fact guilty and understood the rights that he was waiving, found his guilty plea to be voluntary and ...


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