Mill Valley California Sentencing Representation & Consultation Lawyer
Consult with the Attorney Who Wrote the Book on Federal Sentencing
The Law Offices of Alan Ellis focuses its practice exclusively on federal sentencing, prison and post-conviction work. The primary goal of attorney Alan Ellis and his legal team is to help every client obtain the lowest possible sentence at the best facility available with the greatest opportunity for early release. Mr. Ellis, founder of the firm, is a past president of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and is a Fulbright Award winner. He has 40 years of experience as a criminal defense lawyer, law professor, and federal law clerk. The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit recognized him as a “nationally-recognized expert in federal criminal sentencing.” He is the author of the Federal Sentencing Guidebook, and the Federal Prison Guidebook and the Federal Post-Conviction Guidebook,. He also recently published a two part article on Federal Sentencing for The Champion, the monthly magazine of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.
From their offices in San Francisco, California, and New York City, New York, the lawyers at The Law Offices of Alan Ellis consult with defense attorneys and represent clients charged with or convicted of federal crimes in courts across the nation.
Approximately one-third of my work comes to me from defense attorneys requesting my assistance on cases. Another one-third comes to me from clients, their family or friends who are currently represented by counsel. Many of these individuals are pleased with their attorneys and simply want me to consult with them to ensure a better result. Some, however, are concerned with the performance, ability or skills of their current attorney and want me either to consult with them or to actually take over their representation. The final third of my clientele comes to me directly.
With increasing frequency, I am being called upon to consult and assist earlier in the criminal defense process. This is due in no small part to the importance of plea bargaining and the significant recognition that planning and preparation for sentencing, prison placement, and post-conviction remedies must not be relegated to the post-verdict or part-plea stage of the proceedings.
While I cannot guarantee or predict a favorable outcome in any particular case, I will not take a case which I believe has no merit. I will only handle a case if I think the client has a reasonable chance of success. Accordingly, when an individual or his family or friends call us, I require a thorough review of the record before I will agree to represent the person.
Ready Access to Experts in Sentencing Mitigation
Three federal sentencing mitigation specialists are affiliated with the firm: a forensic-licensed clinical social worker and two federal prison consultants who formerly held positions within the Bureau of Prisons (BOP). These experts help the firm’s attorneys identify mitigating factors in a clients’ criminal case that could affect a judge’s sentencing decision and secure favorable prison designations, placements, and deal with a client’s problems while incarcerated.
Advising on a Wide Range of Criminal Cases
The Law Offices of Alan Ellis regularly consults with top criminal defense lawyers across the nation on high-profile federal cases involving:
- Federal white collar crimes: including securities fraud, insider trading, bank fraud, mail and wire fraud, Internet fraud, money laundering, embezzlement and other white collar crimes
- Federal sex crimes involving children or minors: including child pornography, solicitation of a minor for sex, transporting a minor across state lines for sex, and other federal sex offenses involving children
- Federal drug crimes: including possession of drugs, drug trafficking, smuggling, and the cultivation or manufacturing of drugs or narcotics
Changes in Federal Sentencing – The Booker Gall and Kimborough Decisions
On January 12, 2005, the Supreme Court issued a decision in United States v. Booker in which the Court faced head-on a question concerning the constitutionality of the federal sentencing guidelines. The Supreme Court held that the federal sentencing guideline statute, as it was then structured, was unconstitutional.
The Court was then faced with two ways to correct this problem. It could rewrite the statute to require juries to find guideline facts beyond a reasonable doubt, or it could rewrite the statute to make the guidelines purely advisory. It chose the second option.
Now, a sentencing court must determine the applicable guideline range, but it is no longer required to impose a federal sentence within that range. The Booker decision provides defendants with new opportunities and new risks. Courts may now impose sentences lower than the advisory guideline ranges as well as impose higher sentences, up to the maximum sentence provided by Congress.
Effective sentencing representation in the federal system now requires exceptional understanding not only of the guidelines, but also of the other legal criteria courts must take into account in fashioning the sentence. Mr. Ellis and other members of the firm have written widely and lectured on the impact of the Booker decision and the recent follow-up decisions in Gall and Kimbrough, which afford judges even greater leeway in fashioning an appropriate sentence.
- Order the Federal Sentencing Guidebook
- Read an interview with Alan Ellis in Corporate Crime Reporter (PDF)
- For Practice Tips, click here
For effective sentencing representation and consultation about prison placement in the federal system, contact the Law Offices of Alan Ellis.
To schedule a confidential consultation for clients located in the western U.S. or abroad, call the firm’s San Francisco, California, office at 212-252-9775. To schedule a confidential consultation for a client in the eastern U.S., contact the New York City, New York, office at 212.252.9775.