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Argued: May 12, 2009

Before: JACOBS, Chief Judge, WALKER and LEVAL, Circuit Judges.

Laval Farmer was convicted by a jury in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York (Platt, J.) of murdering Jose Angel White and attempting to murder Jacquel Patterson “for the purpose of . . . maintaining or increasing [Farmer's] position” within the Bloods street gang, 18 U.S.C. § 1959(a), as well as conspiring to assault with a dangerous weapon and discharging firearms during the murder and the attempted murder. At trial, the government elicited testimony that Farmer’s friends and fellow Bloods knew him by the nickname “Murder,” an appellation that Farmer had acquired years before and that had little, if any, relevance to any contested issue.

 
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