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United States v. Quiles

February 24, 2009

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
v.
GERMAN QUILES, MARIA QUILES, GLORIA QUILES



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Jan E. Dubois, J.

ORDER & MEMORANDUM ORDER

AND NOW, this 24th day of February, 2009, upon consideration of defendant Maria Quiles's Rule 33 Motion to Vacate Sentence and Grant New Trial*fn1 (Document No. 147, filed February 10, 2009), joined in by defendants German Quiles and Gloria Quiles;*fn2 and The United States' Response to the Defendants' Motion for a New Trial Under Rule 33 (Document No. 152, filed February 19, 2009),for the reasons that follow in the attached Memorandum, IT IS ORDERED that defendants' Rule 33 Motion to Vacate Sentence and Grant New Trial is DENIED.

MEMORANDUM

I. INTRODUCTION

A detailed factual and procedural history is included in the Court's Memorandum and Order of August 13, 2008. See Mem. & Order of Aug. 13, 2008, at 1--4 (Doc. No. 128); United States v. Quiles, Nos. 07-CR-391-01, -02, -03, 2008 WL 3561618, at *1--2 (E.D. Pa. Aug. 13, 2008). Accordingly, the Court sets forth in this Memorandum only the background necessary to resolve the motion presently before the Court.

An Indictment filed on July 12, 2007 charged defendants German, Maria, and Gloria Quiles with one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering in violation of 18 U.S.C. §1956(h) (Count 1) and sixteen counts of money laundering and aiding and abetting in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1956(a)(3)(B) and 18 U.S.C. § 2 (Counts 2 through 17). After a ten-day trial, a jury convicted defendants German and Maria Quiles on all counts on January 17, 2008. The jury acquitted defendant Gloria Quiles of conspiracy to commit money laundering (Count 1) and ten counts of money laundering and aiding and abetting (Counts 2 through 11) and convicted her on the remaining six counts of money laundering and aiding and abetting (Counts 12 through 17).

Defendants German and Maria Quiles are husband and wife and proprietors of Aruba Incorporated ("Aruba"), a money service business located in North Philadelphia. The Quiles's daughter, Gloria, served as secretary of Aruba and co-owned the business property with her father. (Trial Tr. 95--96, Jan. 8, 2008; Trial Tr. 132--33, Jan. 14, 2008; Gov't Ex. 80.)

In July 2006, at the direction of Immigration and Customs Enforcement ("ICE") Special Agent Steven Galambos, a confidential source, Hector Ayala ("Ayala"), initiated contact with German Quiles at Aruba to launder drug money. (Trial Tr. 211, Jan. 9, 2008.) Beginning in September 2006, Ayala conducted over thirty transactions at Aruba as part of an undercover investigation. (Trial Tr. 53, Jan. 8, 2008.) In that time, Ayala laundered approximately $175,900 in funds that he represented as proceeds from drug distribution. (Trial Tr. 160, Jan. 7, 2008.) During every meeting with defendants, Ayala wore a body recording device. (Trial Tr. 208--09, Jan. 9, 2008; Trial Tr. 53, Jan. 8, 2008.) At trial, the government introduced recordings of some of these meetings.

Following the trial, all three defendants filed motions for judgment of acquittal under Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 29 ("Rule 29") and for a new trial under Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 33 ("Rule 33"). By Memorandum and Order dated August 13, 2008, the Court denied the motions of all three defendants. Mem. & Order of Aug. 13, 2008 (Doc. No. 128); United States v. Quiles, 2008 WL 3561618.

On February 10, 2009, Maria Quiles filed the instant Rule 33 Motion to Vacate Sentence and Grant New Trial ("Rule 33 Motion"). (Doc. No. 147, filed Feb. 10, 2009). In the motion, Maria Quiles argues that newly discovered evidence impeaching Ayala requires that the Court vacate her conviction and grant her a new trial. (Rule 33 Mot. ¶¶ 5--8.) Specifically, the motion asserts that Ayala "has recently been charged in the Court of Common Pleas in the County of Philadelphia with multiple counts [of] rape involving multiple juvenile victims, as well as multiple counts of Statutory Rape." (Id. ¶ 5.) This criminal conduct allegedly occurred during the time that Ayala was participating in the investigation of defendants. (Id. ¶ 6.)

German Quiles and Gloria Quiles filed motions to join in Maria Quiles's Rule 33 Motion. (Doc. No. 149, filed Feb. 13, 2009; Doc. No. 151, filed Feb. 19, 2009.) The Court granted both joinder motions. (Doc. No. 150, filed Feb. 18, 2009; Doc. No. 153, filed Feb. 20, 2009.)

II. STANDARD OF REVIEW-MOTION FOR A NEW TRIAL

Under Rule 33 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, the Court may grant a defendant's motion for a new trial based on newly discovered evidence if required in the interest of justice.*fn3 "Whether to grant a Rule 33 motion lies within the district court's sound discretion." United States v. Polidoro, No. 97-CV-383-02, 1998 WL 634921, at *4 (E.D. Pa. Sept. 16, 1998) (citing United States v. Mastro, 570 F. Supp. 1388, 1390 (E.D. Pa. 1983)). To grant a Rule 33 motion on the basis of newly discovered evidence, five requirements must be met:

(a) the evidence must be in fact newly discovered, i.e., discovered since trial; (b) facts must be alleged from which the court may infer diligence on the part of the movant; (c) the evidence relied on must not be merely cumulative or impeaching; (d) it must be material to the issues involved; and (e) it must be such, and of such nature, as ...


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