Covered by NYDaily News. Las Vegas man accused of threatening a prominent attorney and making vile remarks.
Covered by New York Times, and other outlets. Fake heiress accused of conning the city’s wealthy, and has an HBO special being made about her.
Accused of stalking Alec Baldwin. The case garnered nationwide attention, with USAToday, NYPost, and other media outlets following it closely.
Juror who prompted calls for new Ghislaine Maxwell trial turns to lawyer who defended Anna Sorokin.
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Amendment 821 is a game-changer for many people convicted of federal drug crimes. Passed in 2023, this amendment allows for retroactive sentence reductions for some incarcerated individuals. Here’s an overview of Amendment 821 and what it means for thousands of people in federal prison for drug offenses.
Amendment 821 makes two main changes to the federal sentencing guidelines:
These changes apply retroactively starting February 1, 2024. This means some people already in prison can petition for a reduced sentence under Amendment 821.
The U.S. Sentencing Commission estimates over 18,000 federal inmates will be eligible for a reduced sentence under Amendment 821.Here are the basic requirements:
If you meet these criteria, you may qualify for a reduced sentence under Amendment 821 starting on February 1, 2024.
The Sentencing Commission estimates the average sentence reduction will be:
While these are averages, some inmates may see greater reductions depending on their individual case facts. For those with more substantial reductions, Amendment 821 could mean years less in prison.
Starting February 1, 2024, inmates eligible under Amendment 821 can file a motion for a sentence reduction. This is commonly called a “motion for compassionate release.”You may file the motion yourself or with an attorney. The process involves:
This process can take many months. It requires patience as courts have a backlog of motions to handle. An experienced federal prison release attorney can help navigate this complex process.
The judge can reduce your sentence to a certain number of months less than the original sentence. This new sentence will determine your release date from prison.People released under Amendment 821 will need reentry services and support. The delayed implementation until 2024 allows time to prepare reentry plans.Supervised release may be part of the reduced sentence. This means complying with probation-type conditions and supervision after release.
Beyond helping thousands achieve early release, Amendment 821 also signals an important shift in attitudes around federal drug sentencing.The Sentencing Commission itself recognizes lengthy sentences for low-level drug offenders often don’t serve the purposes of sentencing. Amendment 821 is a move toward more just and proportional sentences.Retroactivity means righting past excessive sentences, not just changing future ones. This promotes fairness, rehabilitation, and public safety.For those still facing federal drug prosecution, Amendment 821 means future sentencing will better reflect individual circumstances. Mandatory minimums and rigid guidelines have given way to more nuanced, evidence-based sentencing.
Amendment 821 provides long-awaited relief for many federal drug offenders. However, significant challenges remain:
While Amendment 821 is historic, it’s only one milestone in the marathon toward a more just federal criminal justice system. There’s more work to be done reforming drug sentencing and improving the prison system.
Amendment 821 ushers in a new era of reduced sentences for thousands of federal inmates convicted of drug crimes. This retroactive change provides hope and justice to many who received lengthy sentences under old guidelines.However, more reforms are still needed to make drug sentencing truly fair and proportional for all. Sentencing policies must continue evolving based on evidence, not fear and politics.For now, Amendment 821 offers the chance for a second look – and potentially a second chance – for thousands of incarcerated individuals. This will not only improve lives but also strengthen families, communities, and society as a whole.
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