On Oct. 14, 2009, third-year law student Timothy Nault argued a case on behalf of the United States of America before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
The case, United States v. Zaragoza (No. 09-30076), involved a proceeding to revoke the defendant’s supervised release. The defendant had previously been convicted of a federal crime, for which he served a term of imprisonment. The defendant was then released from prison on several conditions. After holding a hearing, the district court found that the defendant had violated a condition of his release by committing first degree burglary.
On appeal, the issues before the court were whether the district court had improperly heard or admitted hearsay statements in violation of the defendant’s due process right to confront witnesses against him and whether the evidence was sufficient to sustain the district court’s finding. Greg Shogren, Assistant United States Attorney, provided Nault with the opportunity to argue the United States’s case before the Court of Appeals. The Ninth Circuit allows students to present argument if they meet certain requirements and have the client’s consent.
Each party presented for 10 minutes at oral argument. The Ninth Circuit issued a memorandum opinion on October 23, 2009, affirming the district court’s finding that the defendant violated a condition of his supervised release. The memorandum opinion and an audio recording of the oral argument are available on the Ninth Circuit’s Web site.
Mr. Nault has held a legal internship with the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Washington since July of 2008. The United States Attorney’s Office hires interns from Gonzaga University School of Law each year.