United States v. Mobley, No. 13-10561 (10-15-15)(Watford with Callahan and M. Smith).
For a conspiracy conviction, it is not required that the defendant have knowledge of a federal nexus or requirement if the underlying substantive offense does not require knowledge of the federal identity. The 9th affirmed convictions arising from an undercover purchase of illegal arms. The defendant and his fellow conspirators (all of whom pled) agreed to sell a grenade launcher. When the informant and FBI agent showed up, the defendant tried to rob them. A scuffle ensued, and a struggle for handguns. At trial, the defendant argued that he was acting in self-defense: he came to sell a weapon but the agent acted aggressively and the defendant reacted. The 9th easily found sufficient evidence to sustain the conviction. As for the conspiracy, the 9th also affirmed, and discussed that the conspiracy need not have the requirement that the object involve a federal officer or federal funds if the underlying substantive defense does not so require.
The decision is here:http://cdn.ca9.uscourts.gov/datastore/opinions/2015/10/15/13-10561.pdf