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March 4, 2008

Two important (but unpublished!?!) defendant wins in the Eighth Circuit

I am not sure what bother me more: the fact that federal defendants rarely prevail in sentencing appeals or the fact that when they do some circuit seem eager to suggest these rulings are inconsequential by deciding they should be "unpublished."  Two rulings from the Eighth Circuit today, as reported on its official opinion page, get more worked up on this topic today.  Here are the unofficial summaries:

US v. McDonald, No. 05-1617 (8th Cir. Mar. 4, 2008) (available here):

[UNPUBLISHED] [Per Curiam - Before Bye, Beam and Gruender, Circuit Judges]:  On remand from the Supreme Court for reconsideration under Gall v. U.S.  Under the more deferential abuse-of- discretion review outlined in Gall, the district court did not abuse its discretion in sentencing defendant to 132 months, and the sentence is affirmed.

US v. Weston, No. 07-1048 (8th Cir. Mar. 4, 2008) (available here):

[UNPUBLISHED] [Per Curiam - Before Bye, Smith and Benton, Circuit Judges]: District court erred in applying the presumption of reasonableness; this error is now plain, and the record shows a reasonable probability that defendant would have received a lesser sentence but for the error; case remanded for resentencing.

March 4, 2008 at 12:05 PM | Permalink


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I think the link to McDonald leads one to another case.

Posted by: Mark | Mar 5, 2008 11:11:18 AM

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