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United States v. Brown

United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit

June 8, 2015

United States of America, Plaintiff - Appellee,
v.
Terrence Matthew Brown, Defendant - Appellant

Submitted April 17, 2015.

Appeal from United States District Court for the Western District of Missouri - Kansas City.

For United States of America, Plaintiff - Appellee: Lajuana M. Counts, Assistant U.S. Attorney, U.S. Attorney's Office, Kansas City, MO.

Terrence Matthew Brown, Defendant - Appellant, Pro se, Round Rock, TX.

For Terrence Matthew Brown, Defendant - Appellant: John Justin Johnston, Johnston Law Firm, LLC, Kansas City, MO.

Before MURPHY, COLLOTON, and KELLY, Circuit Judges.

OPINION

Page 831

COLLOTON, Circuit Judge.

A jury convicted Terrence Matthew Brown of five counts of wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. On appeal, Brown argues that the district court[1] violated his Sixth Amendment right to confront witnesses against him by limiting his cross-examination of a prosecution witness and excluding the testimony of a defense witness. We conclude that there was no error in the district court's rulings, and we therefore affirm.

I.

In 2000, while in prison, Brown had an idea for a software company, which he incorporated as " The Softwear Group." In 2004, after completing his term of imprisonment, Brown asked Garen Armstrong, a friend he met in prison, to invest in his company. At the time, Armstrong was involved in the residential mortgage business, and he invested in The Softwear Group. As president of the company, Brown earned a salary of $5,000 per month.

When The Softwear Group began experiencing financial difficulties, Brown saw the purchase of homes as a way to raise money for the company. With Armstrong's help, Brown purchased a total of five homes between July and October 2006. Brown received kickbacks from the home purchases by inflating the purchase price on his loan applications. Armstrong prepared the loan applications while Brown

Page 832

provided the necessary information and signed them. At each closing, Brown signed documents in which he acknowledged that any false statement could result in criminal prosecution, fine, or imprisonment. He represented to the lenders that he would occupy each of the homes and that he earned $15,000 ...


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