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Name: People v. Williams
Case #: B230060
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 8
Opinion Date: 10/14/2011

Under Penal Code section 1018, a motion to withdraw plea is not timely if it is made after judgment. Appellant pled no contest to Penal Code section 666 and was sentenced to three years in state prison. Execution of sentence was suspended and he was granted formal probation. Four plus months later, hoping to take advantage of the modification of section 666, he filed a motion to withdraw his plea. The appellate court upheld the denial of the motion, observing that under the plain language of the statute, the critical question is whether judgment has been suspended. If judgment is suspended and probation is granted, a defendant has six months within which to apply to withdraw his plea. Otherwise the application must be made before judgment. Here, judgment occurred with imposition of the prison sentence, regardless of the fact that execution of sentence was suspended and probation granted.