Archive | Booker

Tuesday, January 9th, 2018

Federal Defender Fact Sheet Challenging Link Between Judicial Discretion and Racial Sentencing Disparities

The Federal Defenders Guidelines and Legislative Committees have released a fact sheet, available here, critiquing a recent Sentencing Commission report which concludes that racial disparities in sentencing have increased in the wake of Booker. 

In November 2017, the Sentencing Commission released a report concluding that “the gap between the sentence lengths for Black and White male offenders [has] increas[ed]”post-Booker. Opponents of discretionary sentencing have cited (and misused) this finding to argue for mandatory sentencing regimes. The Federal Defenders’ fact sheet takes issue with the Commission’s failure to address some recurrent criticisms of the statistical model it uses to reach its conclusions. These include the Commission’s failure to account for the racially disparate impacts of (1) mandatory minimums, (2) prosecutors’ charging and bargaining decision, and (3) certain sentencing guideline provisions. As the fact sheet explains:

Racial disparity is a serious problem in the federal criminal justice system.

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Categories: Booker, sentencing

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Categories: Booker, sentencing

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Sunday, September 23rd, 2007

The Thirty Years’ War

United States v. Cuevas, No. 06-0607-cr (2d Cir. August 23, 2007) (Cardamone, Straub, CJJ, Koeltl, DJ

In this case, the defendant Jose Cuevas, who was extradited to the United States from the Dominican Republic, argued, with out success, that a 30-year sentencing cap contained in the extradition decree should apply to him.

Cuevas was charged, in the late 1990’s, with drug trafficking and money laundering offenses. He was home in the Dominican Republic at the time and, not unwisely, decided to remain there.

Undeterred, the government initiated extradition proceedings. After much diplomatic back-and-forth, the D.R. handed Cuevas over to American authorities on July 6,2002. Two weeks later, the U.S. received a copy of the extradition decree itself, signed by the president of the D.R. which invoked a treaty requirement that a “no penalty greater than … thirty years shall be imposed.” Unimpressed with this, Judge Rakoff ultimately sentenced Cuevas to …

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Categories: Booker, equities, extradition, sentence, treaty, Uncategorized

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