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April 24, 2006

Fourth Circuit on reasonableness review and fast-track

The Fourth Circuit today in US v. Montes-Pineda, No. 054471 (4th Cir. Apr. 24, 2006) (available here), explains in some detail why it has jurisdiction over appeals by defendants of sentences imposed after Booker that are within a properly-calculated guideline range.  This is in line with every other circuit to consider the issues, and it also continue the appellate harmony by once affirming a within-guideline sentence as reasonable.

Along the way, the panel in Montes-Pineda not only discusses reasonableness review, but also speaks to "fast-track" disparity.  Interestingly, the panel asserts flatly that the defendant "has convincingly demonstrated that significant sentencing disparities exist between 'fast track' and non-'fast track' districts."  But the panel then explain that this showing does not itself make the defendant's within-guideline sentence unreasonable.

April 24, 2006 at 05:16 PM | Permalink


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