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September 10, 2004

Non-Blakely news from the First Circuit

The First Circuit still has not yet officially weighed in on Blakely's applicability to the federal guidelines. But, somewhat disconcertingly, the First Circuit in unpublished rulings (noted here and here) seemed to be trying hard to limit the opportunity for certain defendants to raise Blakely claims.

Yet news from the First Circuit in a non-Blakely case has restored my faith in that court's balanced concern for the rights of federal defendants. The court in Goldings v. Winn, No. 03-2633 (1st Cir. Sept. 3, 2004), strongly rejected the government's statutory arguments for a new policy limiting federal inmates' eligibility for placement in a community corrections center. Though legally intricate, Goldings is, according to folks involved directly in federal sentencing proceedings, a very potent and important ruling as the first appellate decision concerning, in the words of the court, a "change in policy [that] has generated a flood of lawsuits in the federal district courts." TalkLeft has some additional helpful explanation of the case here.

September 10, 2004 at 12:48 AM | Permalink

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