United States v. Andino, No. 09-4694-cr (2d Cir. December 3, 2010) (Kearse, Calabresi, Wesley, CJJ)
In 2008, customs officials intercepted a package containing cocaine addressed to “Andino Jose” at an address in the Bronx. After a controlled delivery to that address, the recipient called defendant Andino, who picked up the package and brought it to an adjacent building, where he left it unopened.
Customs agents then placed him under arrest, and Andino admitted that he had been paid to pick up the package and transport it. He said that he knew the package contained drugs, but believed it contained marijuana, not cocaine.
At Andino’s trial, the government sought a jury instruction stating that the government would need to prove only that Andino knew the package contained a controlled substance – any controlled substance – and not specifically cocaine. Andino, on his part, wanted a charge requiring the government to prove …