Archive | fast-track disparity

Wednesday, April 9th, 2008

Next Stop, Confusion

United States v. Hendry, No. 06-5118-cr (2d Cir. Aprl 9, 2008) (Leval, Calabresi, Wesley, CJJ) (per curiam)

In this decision the Court blows yet another opportunity to clarify the “fast-track” sentencing issue in illegal reentry cases.

The court has already held that district courts are not required to take into account the lower sentences imposed in fast track districts, but has left open the question whether a court has the authority to do so if it deems a reduced sentence warranted. This decision still seems to leave the question open. Here, although Hendry argued that the district judge erroneously believed that he could not consider the absence of a fast-track program in deciding what sentence to impose, the circuit found that the district judge believed that he could consider it – although he elected not to do so – and the opinion does not say whether the judge’s belief was …

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Categories: fast-track disparity, illegal reentry, sentence, Uncategorized

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Sunday, February 24th, 2008

Fast-Track Train Still Stalled

United States v. Ramirez-Sucar, No. 06-2909-cr (2d Cir. February 20, 2008) (per curiam)

Here is yet another case in which the circuit does not decide whether a district court can consider the lenient illegal-reentry sentences that are regularly imposed in “fast-track” districts as the basis for downward variance. Once again, all the court notes is that a district judge does not have to consider fast-track sentences. But, of course, we already knew that.

Comment: Just decide the *$&@#)$ issue already. It is not even all that controversial any more, in light of Gall and Kimbrough.…

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Categories: fast-track disparity, sentence, Uncategorized

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Monday, December 17th, 2007

Not-So-Fast Track

United States v. Liriano-Blanco, No. 06-2919-cr (2d Cir. December 11, 2007) (Walker, Calabresi, Sack CJJ)

In this unusual case, the circuit entertained an appeal despite a waiver. Liriano-Blanco pled guilty to illegal reentry under a plea agreement in which he agreed to waive any appeal of a sentence of 60 months or less, with a Guideline range of 57 to 71 months. At his sentencing, he asked for a below-Guidelines sentence to avoid “the disparity caused by the existence of fast-track programs in other districts.” The district judge was sympathetic to this argument, and agreed that there was an unwarranted disparity. He indicated that he would like to give a four-level downward departure for this, but thought that he was not permitted to. Erroneously believing that Liriano-Blanco could appeal the sentence, the judge invited him to do so: “Hopefully, maybe, the Second Circuit may disagree with me and [I’ll] be …

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Categories: appeal waiver, fast-track disparity, Uncategorized

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