Evidence - Rule 803(15) - Statement In A Document Affecting An Interest In Property

Favorable and Noteworthy Decisions in the Supreme Court and Federal Appellate Courts

United States v. Boulware, 384 F.3d 794 (9th Cir. 2004)

The defendant was charged with tax evasion and related charges. He claimed that the money that he allegedly skimmed from the company (and gave to his girlfriend) was actually legally still owned by the company (and simply being held by the girlfriend) and was therefore not taxable (i.e., there was no transfer of the money for tax purposes from the company to the defendant or the girlfriend). In a state court lawsuit, the state court agreed that the funds were still owned by the company. The trial court in the federal prosecution erred in excluding evidence of the state court judgment. The court also concluded that the state court judgment was not hearsay because under Rule 803(15) it was a statement in a document affecting an interest in property.