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Supreme Court to hear suspect identification case, rejects Conrad Black appeal

The US Supreme Court [official website; JURIST news archive] on Tuesday granted certiorari [order list, PDF] in a case over a suspect identification but rejected the appeal of Canadian-born media magnate Conrad Black [CBC profile; JURIST news archive] over a fair trial. The court will hear Perry v. New Hampshire [docket], in which Barion Perry is challenging his conviction [AP report] for breaking into a car based on a witness identifying him as the perpetrator while he was in handcuffs under police custody. The witness claims she saw Perry break into the car and steal things but later could neither pick him out of a photo line-up nor describe his appearance. Perry argues that the identification was suggestive since he was in handcuffs, making him look like a criminal. The appeal comes after the New Hampshire Supreme Court upheld Perry's conviction.

The Supreme Court denied certiorari in Black v. United States [docket; cert. petition, PDF] in which Black was seeking to have his remaining conviction overturned. Black was originally convicted on two counts of fraud and a third count of obstruction of justice after a jury acquitted him and his co-defendants of 15 other fraud counts. He appealed to the Supreme Court, which remanded [JURIST report] the case to the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit [official website] to apply a different standard for the two fraud counts. The Seventh Circuit vacated [JURIST report] the conviction for the fraud counts but left intact the obstruction of justice claim. Black argued that in applying the incorrect standard to the fraud counts had created error that should overturn his conviction on the remaining count because of the relation of the charges. Justice Elena Kagan did not take part in the decision to deny certiorari. Black said that he was not surprised [Canadian Business report] that the Supreme Court did not take another look at his case.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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