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United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit.

UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff - Appellee, v. John HUNT, Defendant - Appellant.

No. 19-2665

Decided: March 03, 2020

Before LOKEN, BEAM, and COLLOTON, Circuit Judges. Mark Tremmel, Assistant U.S. Attorney, U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Iowa, Cedar Rapids, IA, for Plaintiff - Appellee John Hunt, Pro Se


John Hunt appeals after he pleaded guilty to child exploitation and child pornography offenses, and the district court 1 sentenced him to a prison term within the advisory sentencing guideline range. His counsel has moved to withdraw, and has filed a brief under Anders v. California, 386 U.S. 738, 87 S.Ct. 1396, 18 L.Ed.2d 493 (1967). Counsel argues that the district court erred at sentencing in applying two guideline enhancements and in considering a contested fact. Counsel also argues that the district court imposed a substantively unreasonable prison term and abused its discretion in imposing a special condition of supervised release.

Upon careful review, we conclude that the district court did not err in applying the enhancements. Specifically, the enhancement for material involving sadistic or masochistic conduct applied because the offense involved material portraying intercourse with a minor. See U.S.S.G. § 2G2.1(b)(4)(A); cf. United States v. Belflower, 390 F.3d 560, 562 (8th Cir. 2004) (per curiam). The enhancement for obstruction of justice applied based on threatening messages that Hunt sent to the victim. See U.S.S.G. § 3C1.1, comment. (n.4(k)). Counsel’s suggestion that the district court failed to make an express factual finding regarding a contested fact is refuted by the record. R. Doc. 56, at 53, line 17.

We further conclude that the district court did not impose a substantively unreasonable prison term, as the court adequately based the sentence on the factors listed in 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a), and we presume that a term within the advisory guideline range is reasonable. See United States v. Callaway, 762 F.3d 754, 760 (8th Cir. 2014). In addition, we conclude that the district court did not abuse its discretion in imposing a special condition of supervised release that Hunt must seek employment and work full time unless excused by the probation office. Cf. United States v. Munoz, 812 F.3d 809, 819 (10th Cir. 2016).

Finally, having reviewed the record pursuant to Penson v. Ohio, 488 U.S. 75, 109 S.Ct. 346, 102 L.Ed.2d 300 (1988), we find no non-frivolous issues for appeal. Accordingly, we affirm, and we grant counsel leave to withdraw.


1.   The Honorable C.J. Williams, United States District Judge for the Northern District of Iowa.


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