Sentencing Tips

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. ...

Jun

This article is meant to serve as an easy-to-read primer to help lawyers understand federal sentencing. Over 25 years ago, before the Sentencing Guidelines went into effect, a federal judge could, with a few exceptions, sentence a convicted defendant to anything from probation to the statutory maximum. All that changed when the Sentencing Guidelines went ...

Apr

This compilation contains unofficial text of amendments to the sentencing guidelines, policy statements, and commentary submitted to Congress, and is provided only for the convenience of the user. Official text of the amendment can be found on the Commission’s website at www.ussc.gov and will appear in a forthcoming edition of the Federal Register.   Click ...

Apr

By Alan Ellis and Mark H. Allenbaugh On April 15, 2016, following last year’s important amendments to relevant conduct, mitigating role and the loss table in the fraud guidelines, the U.S. Sentencing Commission voted to continue to make fundamentally fixes to the Sentencing Guidelines, which have long been in need of repair. These fixes will become final on November 1, 2016, ...

Dec

By Alan Ellis, Mark H. Allenbaugh, Robert Hunter, and Douglas C. Crawford Click for the PDF version. When imposing a sentence, the US Sentencing Guidelines (USSG) instruct judges to consider and weigh two distinct aspects of the crime: “the nature and circumstances of the offense and the history and characteristics of the defendant.” ...

Oct

By Alan Ellis and Mark H. Allenbaugh Click for the PDF version of this article. INTRODUCTION  According to the U.S. Sentencing Commission, federal prosecutions of child pornography possession, distribution and production offenses rose more than 2000% since 1992. This is far and away the fastest growing prosecution rate of any of the major offense ...

Oct

I've been practicing law for nearly 50 years. During that time, I have had a great deal of experience with judges who have been willing to share all manner of suggestions. This article presents some of their best advice for white-collar criminal defense attorneys whose clients are facing sentencing. Minimize citations in your sentencing memorandum. ...

Sep

By Alan Ellis and Mark H. Allenbaugh On April 9, 2015, the US Sentencing Commission voted to fundamentally fix some portions of the US Sentencing Guidelines that have been in need of addressing for quite some time. On April 30, 2015, the Commission submitted to Congress amendments to the federal sentencing guidelines pursuant to its authority under 28 U.S.C. ...

Sep

Click for the PDF version of this article. Approximately 97 percent of all federal criminal defendants plead guilty. Seventy-five percent of the others who proceed to trial are convicted. Almost 99 percent will ultimately be sentenced. Over 87 percent will be sentenced to prison. Thus, for most offenders the three key concerns are: “How much time am ...

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