attempted to pass were counterfeit. This court reviews the claim “to determine
whether, after viewing the evidence in the light most favorable to the
prosecution, any rational trier of fact could have found the essential elements of
the crime beyond a reasonable doubt,” accepting all reasonable inferences to
support the verdict. United States v. Infante, 404 F.3d 376, 384 (5th Cir. 2005)
(internal quotation marks and citations omitted).
“To establish a violation of 18 U.S.C. § 472, the government must prove
that the defendant knew that the bills were counterfeit and that the defendant
intended to defraud when he negotiated the bills.” United States v. Acosta, 972
F.2d 86, 89 (5th Cir. 1992). A defendant’s intent to defraud and knowledge that
the bills were counterfeit may be proved through circumstantial evidence. See
United States v. Perez, 698 F.2d 1168, 1170 (5th Cir. 1983).
Contrary to Reyes’ argument, there was sufficient evidence from which a
reasonable jury could conclude that he knew the bills he possessed were
counterfeit. The Government presented direct evidence in the form of Martinez’s
testimony, which established that he and Reyes discussed counterfeiting bills,
that Reyes agreed to having Martinez produce some counterfeit bills, that he
copied an original $50 bill of Reyes’ and returned the two copies and the original
to Reyes, and that, although he may have given Reyes additional counterfeit
bills in payment for a car wash, the $150 consisting of the original and two
counterfeit $50 bills was a separate transaction of which Reyes was fully aware.
The testimony was corroborated by the fact that Reyes was found with an
original, legitimate $50 bill and two counterfeit bills bearing the same serial
number as the legitimate bill, carried together in his back pocket, apart from the
stash of legitimate bills contained in his front pocket.
Reyes challenges Martinez’s credibility. However, he makes no argument
that the testimony was incredible as a matter of law, and this court will not
disturb the jury’s credibility findings. See United States v. Freeman, 77 F.3d
812, 816 (5th Cir. 1996). To the extent that Reyes argues that, because the jury