from the United States District Court for the Middle District
of Florida D.C. Docket No. 8:16-cr-00335-JDW-JSS-1
TJOFLAT, MARCUS, and JORDAN, Circuit Judges.
Longoria was convicted of possession of a firearm by a
convicted felon and was sentenced to fifteen years in
prison under an Armed Career Criminal Act ("ACCA")
sentence enhancement. This ACCA sentence enhancement, applicable
when a defendant has "three previous convictions . . .
for a violent felony or a serious drug offense, or both,
committed on occasions different from one another,
" was based upon three previous serious
drug-related convictions: two counts of distribution of
cocaine and one count of participation in a
conspiracy with intent to distribute cocaine.
appeals his conviction and sentence on four grounds. Three
are squarely foreclosed by our precedent. See infra
part IV. Longoria's first issue, whether the District
Court erred in determining that he had three predicate
offenses that occurred on different occasions under the ACCA,
is also unavailing. Accordingly, we affirm his conviction and
2009, Longoria was charged with one count of participation in
a conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine, a
violation of 21 U.S.C. § 846, and two counts of
distribution of cocaine, a violation of 21 U.S.C. §
841(a)(1). The indictment charged that the conspiracy
occurred from an "unknown date which was no later than
December, 2007, through on or about December 10, 2008."
The indictment also charged that the two distribution
offenses occurred on November 24, 2008 and December 3, 2008.
pleaded guilty to each of the three counts. He admitted to
the following facts in his plea agreement. Longoria told
undercover detectives that his co-defendant, Richard
Caraballo, could sell them kilograms of cocaine for $20, 000
per kilogram. Undercover detectives contacted Longoria on
November 24, 2008, and Longoria arranged a meeting between
the detectives and Caraballo. The detectives purchased five
and a half grams of cocaine from Caraballo on that date.
Longoria and Caraballo met with the detectives again on
December 3, 2008, when the detectives purchased thirty-five
grams of cocaine. One week later, on December 10, Longoria
met with the detectives to verify that they had $20, 000 to
purchase one kilogram of cocaine from Caraballo before the
detectives went to Caraballo's house. Authorities later
discovered 1, 142 grams of cocaine at Caraballo's house.
was sentenced to thirty-seven months in prison in April 2010.
The judgment stated that the distribution offenses ended on
November 24 and December 3, 2008, and the conspiracy offense
ended on December 10, 2008. Longoria was incarcerated and
later left prison under supervised release.
2016, Longoria was arrested and charged with possession of a
firearm by a convicted felon, a violation of 18 U.S.C. §
922(g)(1). Longoria pleaded guilty and admitted the following
facts. In March 2015, while on supervised
release, Longoria had arranged via Facebook to sell a rifle
to an undercover detective for $300. He told the detective
that he was a felon and that his wife would carry out the
sale. The detective met with the woman, and she
exchanged the rifle with him for $300. Longoria called the
detective after the sale to explain that he had been afraid
to sell the rifle in person because of his past arrest.
maximum sentence under 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1), without a
sentence enhancement, is ten years in prison. Longoria's
plea agreement noted this maximum. The Probation Office,
however, later indicated that Longoria qualified as an armed
career criminal under the ACCA and was subject to a
fifteen-year statutory minimum sentence. After this
discovery, the District Court gave Longoria the opportunity
to withdraw his plea. He declined. The District Court then
examined Longoria's 2009 plea agreement and the
transcript of the change-of-plea hearing, and, relying upon
the three counts relating to the incidents of November 24,
December 3, and December 10, 2008, determined that the
"three previous convictions" constituted
"serious drug offense[s] . . . committed on occasions
different from one another." 18 U.S.C. § 924(e)(1).
Consequently, the District Court sentenced Longoria to
fifteen years in prison.
appeals his conviction and sentence on four grounds. First,
he claims that the District Court erred by finding that his
three predicate offenses occurred on "occasions
different from one another" to qualify for a sentence
enhancement under the ACCA. Second, he claims the District
Court improperly considered "non-elemental facts, "
the dates of his prior convictions, in determining that they
qualified as serious drug offenses that occurred on different
occasions under the ACCA. Third, he claims that his sentence
enhancement violated his rights under the Fifth and Sixth
Amendments to the United States Constitution. Fourth, he
raises a new argument that his statute of conviction, 18
U.S.C. § 922(g), is beyond Congress's grant of power
under the United States Constitution's Commerce Clause
and is therefore unconstitutional.
Court reviews de novo whether prior offenses meet
the ACCA's different-occasions requirement. United
States v. Sneed, 600 F.3d 1326, 1330 n.5 (11th Cir.
2010). We also review de novo whether a prior
conviction qualifies as a serious drug offense for purposes
of the ACCA.United States v. Braun, 801
F.3d 1301, 1303 (11th Cir. 2015). Constitutional challenges
to sentences are reviewed de novo. United States
v. Weeks, 711 F.3d 1255, 1259 (11th Cir. 2013).
Longoria's second constitutional claim, a Commerce Clause
challenge to 18 U.S.C. § 922(g), is reviewed for plain
error because he raises it for the first time on appeal.
United States v. Wright, 607 F.3d 708, 715 (11th
Cir. 2010). Plain error occurs "if (1) there was error,
(2) that was plain, (3) that affected the defendant's