H.R. 4261, the Safe, Accountable, Fair, and Effective (SAFE) Justice Act

On Tuesday, November 7, 2017, Representatives Bobby Scott (D-VA) and Jason Lewis (R-MN) introduced bipartisan legislation aimed at safely reining in the size and associated costs of the federal criminal code and prison system.  A press release with a link to the legislation can be here: https://bobbyscott.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/scott-lewis-introduce-bipartisan-criminal-justice-reform-legislation  

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Ineffective Assistance of Counsel at Sentencing

ineffective assistance of counsel

The American Bar Association’s “Criminal Justice Standards for the Defense Function” (4th ed.) strongly suggest that failure to research and cite favorable sentencing statistics may constitute ineffective assistance of counsel.  In the seminal case of Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668 (1984), the U.S. Supreme Court observed that “prevailing norms of practice as reflected in the

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The U.S. Sentencing Commission Continues to Make Fundamental Fixes to the Sentencing Guidelines

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. These fixes became final on November 1, 2016 During this amendment cycle, with

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