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June 24, 2005

Angelos amicus brief

As first reported in this post, earlier this week an amicus brief, signed by 163 former U.S. attorneys general and retired federal judges and prosecutors, was filed in support of the appeal to the 10th Circuit by Weldon Angelos, the first-time offender sentenced to 55 years' imprisonment for marijuana sales under federal mandatory sentencing statutes.  I have now received a copy of this brief, which can be downloaded below.  Here are excerpts from the brief's introduction:

This Court is called upon to review the sentence of Weldon Angelos (“Mr. Angelos”), then a twenty-four year old first-time offender who was sentenced to a draconian 55-year mandatory mlnimum term of incarceration for conviction on three criminal counts: possessing — not using or even displaying — a firearm under his clothing whle selling several hundred dollars of marijuana on two occasions and for owning several additional firearms which were discovered after police searched his home....

Amici Curiae, a group consisting of 163 individuals — including four former United States Attorneys General, retired United States Circuit Judges, retired United States District Judges, and former United States Attorneys and other former high ranking United States Department of Justice officials — who bring an expertise in federal criminal law and federal sentencing issues based on hundreds of years of collective experience, respectfully urge this Court to conclude that the 55-year sentence imposed in this case constitutes cruel and unusual punishment in violation of the Eighth Amendment of the United States Constitution.  For this reason, Amici Curiae request that this Court reverse the judgment of the District Court and find that the mandatory minimum term to which Angelos was sentenced is unconstitutional.

Download angelos_amicus_brief.pdf

June 24, 2005 at 08:02 AM | Permalink

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