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Second Circuit Rejects Due Process Challenge to SORNA Conviction

On December 16, 2009, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit upheld a sex offender’s conviction under the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA) against a due process challenge.

Travis Hester was convicted of a sex offense in New York in 2006. After his release from prison, Hester absconded and moved to Florida. Hester did not register after moving to Florida.

Hester was charged with violating SORNA. Hester argued on appeal that his conviction violated due process because he had not received actual notice that he had to register, and because neither New York nor Florida had implemented SORNA at the time of his offense conduct.

The Second Circuit rejected Hester’s notice argument on the grounds that he knew he had to register under state law. Furthermore, the fact that New York or Florida had not fully implemented the SORNA was irrelevant to whether Hester was subject to the law, the court concluded.

Hester’s conviction was accordingly affirmed.

See: United States v. Hester, 589 F.3d 86 (2nd Cir. 2009).

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Related legal case

United States v. Hester