United States v. Anthony Robinson

United States Court of Appeals For the Eighth Circuit ___________________________ No. 21-2929 ___________________________ United States of America, lllllllllllllllllllllPlaintiff - Appellee, v. Anthony Robinson, lllllllllllllllllllllDefendant - Appellant. ____________ Appeal from United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri - St. Louis ____________ Submitted: April 12, 2022 Filed: August 10, 2022 ____________ Before COLLOTON, MELLOY, and GRUENDER, Circuit Judges. ____________ COLLOTON, Circuit Judge. Federal inmate Anthony Robinson appeals an order of the district court directing the Bureau of Prisons to turn over all funds in Robinson’s inmate trust account for payment toward an outstanding restitution obligation. We conclude that the order is not adequately supported, and therefore vacate the order and remand for further proceedings. I. In 2013, the district court sentenced Robinson to life imprisonment for murder in aid of racketeering activity and conspiracy to commit racketeering. The court ordered Robinson to pay $14,186.17 in restitution, owed jointly and severally with two co-defendants, and a $500 special assessment. The judgment states that all “criminal monetary penalties are due in full immediately,” but that if the “defendant cannot pay in full immediately, then the defendant shall make payments under” a “minimum payment schedule.” The payment schedule in the judgment recommends that Robinson “pay criminal monetary penalties through an installment plan in accordance with the Bureau of Prisons’ Inmate Financial Responsibility Program at the rate of 50% of the funds available to the defendant.” In May 2021, the government moved the district court to authorize the Bureau of Prisons to turn over to the clerk of the court all funds held in Robinson’s inmate trust account for payment toward his restitution obligation. The government asserted that Robinson still owed $12,151.77 in criminal monetary penalties, and that the Bureau of Prisons had funds totaling $2,753.21 in Robinson’s inmate trust account. At the request of the United States Attorney, the Bureau of Prisons had encumbered these funds against transfer. The motion stated that “[u]pon information and belief, some of these encumbered funds are tax credit payments issued” pursuant to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “CARES Act”) or “subsequent stimulus legislation related to the ongoing COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.” See Pub. L. No. 116-136, § 2201, 134 Stat. 281, 335 (2020). The government’s reply brief in the district court asserted that Robinson “recently received a $1,400.00 stimulus check.” The government, however, introduced little evidence in support of its motion. The only relevant evidence is a two-page printout from the Bureau of Prisons bearing Robinson’s name. The document is entitled “INMATE FINANCIAL -2- RESPONSIBILITY: DISPLAY INMT FINANCIAL OBLG ADJUSTMENTS,” and it records the dates and amounts of certain “payments.” The document lists several “inside” payments of $25 each, and two “outside” payments in the amounts of $250 and $1,420.43, respectively. No witness or affidavit explained the significance of these payments, including the meaning of “inside” and “outside” or whether the “payments” were incoming or outgoing. Although one entry refers to a “payment” of $1,420.43, we have located no evidence confirming that Robinson …

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