February 13, 2014
by Cynthia Miley
Italy's Constitutional Court on Wednesday struck down a drug law that tripled sentences for selling, cultivating or possessing marijuana. The constitutional court declared the law illegitimate without further elaboration. The cannabis law was blamed for causing Italian prison overcrowding, and an ...[read more]
December 20, 2013
by Bradley McAllister
President Barack Obama on Thursday commuted the sentences of eight inmates currently serving lengthly prison terms for crack cocaine offenses, citing the Fair Sentencing Act of 2010 (FSA). The FSA reduced significant disparities in convictions of drug offenses related to crack cocaine and powder ...[read more]
May 19, 2013
by Endia Vereen
The US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit on Friday ruled that people convicted of crack cocaine offenses have a right to resentencing hearings under the Fair Sentencing Act (FSA). The case was brought by two incarcerated defendants seeking retroactive relief from racially discriminatory, 10- ...[read more]
November 1, 2012
by Katherine Bacher
On November 1, 2011, the US Sentencing Commission (USSC) released new guidelines that reduced federal minimum sentencing guidelines for those convicted on charges related to crack cocaine. These new guidelines reduced the sentences of 12,000 inmates and were intended to address the overcrowded ...[read more]
September 28, 2012
by Rebecca DiLeonardo
Drug trafficking and violent crime in Central America and the Caribbean threaten the rule of law in those regions, according to a report released Thursday by the UN Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC). The report concluded that cocaine trafficking and the associated violence are the main source of ...[read more]
July 9, 2012
by Garrett Eisenhour
On July 9, 2009, a group of federal judges urged the US Sentencing Commission (USSC) to revise the calculations used to determine federal criminal sentences, calling them complicated and mechanical. A few months earlier, US Attorney General Eric Holder had called for a review of disparities ...[read more]
June 21, 2012
by Rebecca DiLeonardo
The US Supreme Court ruled 5-4 Thursday that the Fair Sentencing Act (FSA), which reduces minimum sentences for crack-cocaine convictions, applies to defendants who were sentenced after the act was in place, even if they were arrested before the act took effect. In the combined cases of Dorsey v. ...[read more]
April 18, 2012
by Jerry Votava
The US Supreme Court heard oral arguments Tuesday in Dorsey v. United States on whether minimum sentencing mandates in the Fair Sentencing Act (FSA) should be applied to crimes committed before the FSA was enacted, but where sentencing occurred after. This case was consolidated with Hill v. United ...[read more]
November 1, 2011
by Alexandra Malatesta
The US Sentencing Commission (USSC) released new guidelines Tuesday that will reduce the federal minimum sentencing guidelines for those convicted on charges related to crack cocaine. They also published a 645-page report assessing the impact of statutory minimum sentences on federal sentencing, ...[read more]
July 28, 2011
by Dwyer Arce
On July 28, 2010, the US House of Representatives approved legislation to reduce the sentencing disparity between crack and powder cocaine offenses. The Fair Sentencing Act of 2010 amended the law to reduce the sentencing ratio from 100:1 to 18:1. Under a law passed in 1986, an individual ...[read more]

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