Dung Thi and her boyfriend operated a nail salon in Fitchburg, Wisconsin. When customers paid for services with a debit card, a hidden video camera recorded them as they typed their PINs. Thi and others used the information to make unauthorized withdrawals from the customers’ accounts; total losses were calculated to be more than $77,000. After Thi’s guilty plea, Judge Crabb (W.D. Wis.) imposed a below-guidelines sentence of 36 months.
On appeal, Thi argued that the district court did not adequately consider her arguments based on her role in the offense, the effect of the sentence on her three-year-old daughter, and the sufficiency of home detention. Earlier today, the Seventh Circuit affirmed in United States v. Thi (No. 11-3004) (per curiam).
On role in the offense, the court observed that Thi was at least as culpable as her coconspirators — she knew of the plot, carried a flash drive with her customers’ financial information, and personally made some of the illegal withdrawals herself. On the daughter, the district court’s discussion of the issue was “bare-bones,” but adequate — “the court said enough to satisfy us that it understood and took account of Thi’s family circumstances” (e.g., by recommending that Thi serve her sentence “as close as possible to her family”). On the possibility of home detention, the Seventh Circuit relied on the presumption of reasonableness of a below-guidelines sentence and the fact that the guidelines recommended against home detention in lieu of imprisonment for Thi.
Cross posted at Seventh Circuit Updates.