Today the Supreme Court granted certiorari in Pulsifer v. United States, No. 22-340, to clarify the First Step Act’s expansion of 18 U.S.C. § 3553(f)’s “safety valve.”
Section 3553(f) permits a district court to sentence a defendant below the otherwise applicable statutory mandatory minimum for federal drug offenses if the defendant meets certain criteria. The 2018 First Step Act expanded this provision.
As relevant here, to be eligible for the safety valve, a defendant must have a limited number of criminal history points. The defendant must “not have–
(A) more than 4 criminal history points, excluding any criminal history points resulting from
a 1-point offense, as determined under the sentencing guidelines;
(B) a prior 3-point offense, as determined under the sentencing guidelines; and
(C) a prior 2-point violent offense, as determined under the sentencing guidelines ….”
The “and” has been a source of confusion.
Several circuits hold the “and” …