Sunday, January 30, 2005

The post-Booker thinking of the U.S. attorney for the E.D. Va.

Professor Berman has this post about a speech given by the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, with his ideas about the effects of Booker and Fan Fan and what he thinks the Congress should do about it.

One interesting point was that the E.D. Va. judges had stuck within in the guidelines in all but one of 20+ sentencings since the Supreme Court cases came down, with the one sentence below the guidelines.

Professor Berman concludes regarding one of the points made that the Department of Justice does not merely want mandatory guidelines, it wants mandatory guidelines without having to meet its burden of proof before juries.

In many ways, this entire discussion is strange to me. In state court in Virginia, it is my impression that the defendants plead guilty to get the benefit of the guidelines and to avoid the indefiniteness of sentencing by the juries, which have been known from time to time to really stick it to drug dealers and such.

No comments: