DELLI PAOLI V. UNITED STATES, 352 U. S. 232 (1957)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Delli Paoli v. United States, 352 U.S. 232 (1957)

Delli Paoli v. United States

No. 33

Argued October 18, 1956

Decided January 14, 1957

352 U.S. 232


Petitioner is one of five co-defendants convicted in a joint trial in a federal court on a federal charge of conspiring to deal unlawfully in alcohol. Without deleting references to petitioner, the court admitted in evidence a confession of another co-defendant, made after termination of the conspiracy, but the court stated clearly at the time, on several other occasions, and in its charge to the jury, that the confession was to be considered only in determining the guilt of the confessor, and not that of any of the other defendants. The conspiracy was simple; the separate interests of each defendant were emphasized throughout the trial; admission of the confession was postponed to the end of the Government's case; in the main, the confession merely corroborated what the Government had already established; its references to petitioner were largely cumulative; and there was nothing in the record indicating that the jury was confused or failed to follow the court's instructions.

Held: petitioner's conviction is sustained. Pp. 352 U. S. 233-243.

1. The evidence admitted against petitioner was sufficient to sustain his conviction. Pp. 352 U. S. 234-236.

2. Under the circumstances of this case, the court's instructions to the jury provided petitioner with sufficient protection, so that the admission of his co-defendant's confession, strictly limited to use against the confessor, did not constitute reversible error against petitioner. Krulewitch v. United States, 336 U. S. 440, distinguished. Pp. 352 U. S. 236-243.

(a) The court's instructions to the jury were sufficiently clear. Pp. 352 U. S. 239-241.

(b) On the record in this case, it is fair to assume that the jury followed the court's instructions. Pp. 352 U. S. 241-242.

229 F.2d 319 affirmed.

Page 352 U. S. 233

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