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Name: People v. Puluc-Sique
Case #: A123451
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 1 DCA
Division: 5
Opinion Date: 03/08/2010

The appellate disentitlement doctrine does not apply to a defendant who has been deported.
After pleading no contest to possession of cocaine, appellant was granted drug treatment probation but after sentencing was released to ICE and deported. Nevertheless, he filed a timely appeal from the judgment and counsel filed an opening brief. The People filed a motion to dismiss the appeal on the ground that appellant was a fugitive from justice. Under the appellate disentitlement doctrine, a court has the discretion to dismiss an appeal of an appellant who is a fugitive from justice under the theory that dismissal is an equitable sanction for a party’s flight. However, because a deported appellant has not willfully flouted the court’s orders in the same sense as the defendant who has voluntarily fled the country and, thereby, has forfeited his right to appeal, it is not proper to impose the sanction of dismissal of an appeal to the deported individual.