Alan Ellis Newsletters

Sep

For the past year and a half, Alan Ellis has interviewed almost two dozen federal judges, discussing with them their philosophies on and advice for lawyers representing clients at federal sentencing. Mr. Ellis saw a pattern across the viewpoints of the judges: they are not getting the information they need during the sentencing phase of a case. Some of the ...

Apr

In this article, published in Bloomberg Law's Criminal Law Reporter and White Collar Crime Report, Alan Ellis and Mark Allenbaugh discuss the importance of effectively using statistics in federal sentencing to avoid unwarranted disparities. The authors provide an overview to practitioners on how to best use the data in mitigation of punishment. Click to read the article.

Apr

By Alan Ellis and Mark Allenbaugh Published by The National Trial Lawyers, April 13, 2017. Reprinted with permission. Bureau of Prisons policies are complex and difficult to understand—even defense lawyers find them taxing particularly so when it comes to medical and mental health issues. Clients and families are more often than not lost in the bureaucratic maze of ...

Mar

Reproduced with permission from Bloomberg BNA's White Collar Crime Report, 3/31/2017 Alan Ellis and Mark Allenbaugh discuss the proposed amendment to the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines regarding acceptance of responsibility and challenging relevant conduct. The authors argue that any revised commentary to U.S.S.G. § 3E1.1 should make clear that challenges to relevant conduct, as well as arguments in favor of departures and ...

Mar

Plea Bargained vs. Open Pleas: What the Data Reveal By Alan Ellis, Esq., and Mark H. Allenbaugh, Esq. Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 11 governs guilty pleas for federal criminal defendants. This expert analysis examines the raw sentencing data published by the U.S. Sentencing Commission regarding the types of pleas defendants enter and the sentences they receive. In particular, we examine the number ...

Mar

This article, published by Law360, reviews a key opinion authored by Judge Gorsuch as it pertains to federal sentencing — United States v. Sabillon-Umana, 772 F.3d 1328 (10th Cir. 2014) — and the effect it already has had on recent U.S. Supreme Court sentencing jurisprudence. The authors believe that should Judge Gorsuch be confirmed, he will have not just a ...

Jan

The U.S. Sentencing Commission Continues to Make Fundamental Fixes to the Sentencing Guidelines  By:  Alan Ellis and Mark H. Allenbaugh  On April 15, 2016, following last year’s important amendments to relevant conduct, mitigating role, and fraud guidelines, the U.S. Sentencing Commission voted to continue to make fundamental fixes to the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines (USSG) that have long been in need of repair. ...

Jan

Alan Ellis and Michael Henderson share the ins and outs of the Bureau of Prison's Pre-Release Program in this article published in Criminal Justice, Winter 2017. Click to read the full article.

Oct

When we last visited the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) reduction in sentence (RIS) program (sometimes erroneously called “compassionate release”), the Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) had just blasted the BOP. (See Alan Ellis & EJ Hurst II, Federal BOP Puts a Little Compassion in Its Newest Release Program, 28 Crim. Just., no. 4, Winter 2014, at 41.) ...

Oct

BOP policies are complex and difficult to understand--even defense lawyers find them taxing. Clients and families are more often than not lost in the bureaucratic maze of terminology and regulations, and they turn to their lawyers for explanations. This column consolidates the information from the previous articles and adds new information about how inmates with medical needs will be treated ...