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Date: 12-26-2023

Case Style:

United States of America v. Michael Brown

Case Number: 23-4135

Judge: Before GREGORY and RUSHING, Circuit Judges, and MOTZ, Senior Circuit Judge.


Plaintiff's Attorney: Andrew R. Cogar


Defendant's Attorney: Kristen M. Leddy, Assistant Federal Public Defender

Description: . 2 PER CURIAM: Michael M. Brown pled guilty, pursuant to a written plea agreement, to conspiracy to commit wire fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1343, 1349, and aggravated identity theft, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1028A. The district court sentenced Brown to a total term of 75 months’ imprisonment. Brown’s counsel has filed a brief pursuant to Anders v. California, 386 U.S. 738 (1967), asserting that there are no meritorious grounds for appeal but questioning whether Brown’s sentence is reasonable. Although notified of his right to do so, Brown has not filed a pro se supplemental brief. The Government has moved to dismiss the appeal pursuant to the appellate waiver in Brown’s plea agreement. We affirm in part and dismiss in part. “We review an appellate waiver de novo to determine whether the waiver is enforceable.” United States v. Boutcher, 998 F.3d 603, 608 (4th Cir. 2021). “[W]e will enforce the waiver if it is valid and if the issue being appealed falls within the scope of the waiver.” Id. (internal quotation marks omitted). An appellate waiver is valid if the defendant enters it “knowingly and intelligently, a determination that we make by considering the totality of the circumstances.” Id. “Generally though, if a district court questions a defendant regarding the waiver of appellate rights during the [Fed. R. Crim. P.] 11 colloquy and the record indicates that the defendant understood the full significance of the waiver, the waiver is valid.” United States v. McCoy, 895 F.3d 358, 362 (4th Cir. 2018) (internal quotation marks omitted). Our review of the record confirms that Brown knowingly and intelligently waived his right to appeal his conviction and sentence, with limited exceptions not applicable here.

Outcome: This court requires that counsel inform Brown, in writing, of the right to petition the Supreme Court of the United States for further review. If Brown requests that a petition be filed, but counsel believes that such a petition would be frivolous, then counsel may move in this court for leave to withdraw from representation. Counsel’s motion must state that a copy thereof was served on Brown. We dispense with oral argument because the facts and legal contentions are adequately presented in the materials before this court and argument would not aid the decisional process

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