View Full Version : Are First time non violent drug offenders get long sentencings?>

08-09-2003, 04:54 AM
hi my fiance is bieng charged with a drug transportation
and is looking at 10- life but lawyer says he can get downward departure from those guidelines because of his clean record.. and so on...

but what i was wondering is if they get harsh sentences like if any one has any idean in this catagory or drug charges pm me or post it please thanks :confused: :confused:

08-09-2003, 07:13 AM
Hi Lisa,

I believe that with the mandatory minimums that are in place, judges do not have much discretion to alter sentences. I believe by these crazy laws, they have to give the time for the crime, no matter the circumstances. (someone correct me if I'm wrong)

With regards to a downward departure, please get anything like that in writing. Because once your boyfriend agrees to the plea he will be bound by it, without little recourse. In our experience, my husband was "promised" a downward departure but when he signed the plea, the prosecutor did NOT hold up his end of the "agreeement". His own attorney was a part of the entire process and did not protect my honey from any of it, he actually aided the feds. No trial, less work for them all.

Do not trust them, trust each other. If something doesn't seem right, speak on it.

08-09-2003, 09:51 AM
There is a loop hole for somewhat getting around the mandatory minimum it is called a safety valve. Their are some guidelines to have the safety valve enacted but if it does happen the judge can depart from the guidelines by two levels. He also should admit when he is meeting with the probation officer who will do his Pre sentence report that he used drugs and/or had a drinking problem whether he did or not. This allows non-violent offenders to become eligible for the 500 hour Drug treatment program while he is in prison. This program knocks off up to 12months of jail time and allows the inmate to be released to a halfway house six months earlier then normal. For more information on the safety valve just go to yahoo and type safety valve and alot of articles will come up.
Good Luck

08-09-2003, 10:05 AM
My man was charged and sentenced on possession and delivery. ( not sure how many counts) This is his first offense and was never arrested before this. He was looking at 10 yrs min to something over 20 yrs. (not positive of the exact, but I think was similar to what your situation is) He received 7 yrs and he requested downward departure. His projected release is showing a year less than that and from what I understand at the end of every year they serve they take off 54 days. ( as long as they stay out of trouble-GOOD TIME) So, actually my man will be out 19 mos earlier than originally sentenced. So figure on him being out approx 2 yrs earlier than what he is sentenced. ( as long as he keeps his nose clean) Hope this helps you. Also, after they serve 6 mos in the federal institution they can request to transfer to a camp which is so much better.

08-09-2003, 05:54 PM
My husband has never had a parking ticket and is sitting in Maximum Prison today with a 15 year sentance, he was labled as a "King Pin", no drugs found on his person or car or our home and no recorded conversations or pictures, just another person's testimony, his cousin who was also charged and (walked) who has a rap sheet longer than the bible and an unregistered gun(the"enhancement") that gave him another 5 years. The Prosecuter and our Lawyer told us that he would never do more than 2 years in a camp if he took the plea, the plea that was offered was 2 years. The judge overlooked the plea and gave him the 15 because of the enhancement! The FEDS are a trip and a half!


08-09-2003, 08:47 PM
The DEA website has a good page on the mandatory drug sentencing guidelines that give you a picture of what is in enacted by law [thank you Reagen]. Put the word, "DEA" in any search engine and you will get their website.

You may also want to check out FAMM [Families Against Mandatory Minimums]. Their website gives you a good picture of what can happen to first time federal drug "offenders"...and what one can do about these mandatory sentencing laws.

08-09-2003, 10:59 PM
just though I would add that the mandatory minimums are based on the drug weight involved and the type. Be careful and good luck

08-09-2003, 11:42 PM
hi i fount out that it was a kilo and 28 grams

08-10-2003, 12:27 PM
13luvs52. I also mirror what eveyone else has said. Do not believe a word oout of their mouths unless he has it in writing. They LIE just to get a guilty plea and then use all sort of "enhancements". Good luck.

08-10-2003, 03:12 PM
To All , my son was arrested on aconspircy charge no drugs no money only hear say by other people , he got 10 yrs mandertory. the feds have it down to a science , and the judges i have nothing to say for them or the DA janice

08-10-2003, 04:47 PM

WE had it in writing with both the prosecuter and the defense attorneys signature and the judge totally ignored it and said that, it has no merit, he (the Judge) has the righ to use his decretion and make the fianl decison!

Janice, my husband has that same charge, but just as a leadership role and our phones and evreything were clean, they had been tapping us for ove 14 months!

The FEDS can and will do what the want!

08-10-2003, 11:38 PM
My husband was charged with 1 count of conspiracy to distribute drugs, 2 counts of possession and 1 count forfeiture. He pleaded guilty less the 2 counts of possession and 1 count of forfeiture. My husband never had any drugs on him nor has he ever gotten into trouble. They never came and searched our home nor was there any pictures of drug transactions. It was one persons word against anothers. He got 7 years and 1 month. The judge said that he wanted to make an example out of him. The judge also recommended him for the 500 hour drug treatment and then he recommended to the BOP that he not be given the 12 months off for it. What it that all about?
But yes non-violent drug offenders get long sentences everyday.

08-11-2003, 11:45 AM
Koldazzice, my phone was not taped but my sons cell phone was and other peoples home phone were taped, they had been doing this for 2 yrs, and that was the conspircy that put my son away for 10 yrs, janice

10-23-2003, 10:23 PM
I was offered 1 year for a first time offender --- My lawyer well call him ASS, told me to fight it--- i was found guilty and recieved 87 months. I never had a freakin parking ticket! They lied on the stand and when the judge knew they were lying -- he overlooked it like it wasnt any big deal... Well years later my sentance was reduced on appeal. So i ended up doing 4 1/2 in federal camp -- FortDix.. They funny part was watching them on the stand --- making up these stories its like there not even talkin about you its like a movie a bad one at that... The sad part is you pay and your loved ones pay for it .

10-23-2003, 10:27 PM
And if thats not bad enough
then once you get to hell {Prison} you have to deal with the brain sergon CO's. You want to see scum at it's best take a look at some of the people that work in the system...

10-23-2003, 10:31 PM

10-23-2003, 11:12 PM
There is latitude for judges to give a downward departures based on reasons besides helping the government it is called a 5k2 and can be for changing your life, doing the next right thing etc. However, they are hardly given anymore due to the current environment i.e. Ashcroft the the US Attorney. He has basically asked all AUSA to report and/or appeal any judges using 5k2 and alot of judges just assume not deal with the headache. It is not worth it to them.

The reason I know this is that it was one of the things we tried as well. I had been sober for at that time 14mths, had letters written on my behalf by business leaders, people in AA, siblings...60 in all, a years worth of clean drug test for my PreTrial officer, and quite a few other things. It took the judge after hearing our argument as well as the AUSA argument all of 3 seconds to say NO!

A 5k1 downward departure based on helping the government which is an option for some as well.

I hope this helps and you get a judge that will grant a 5k2. Good Luck!

10-24-2003, 08:03 AM
What if there is no mandatory minimum? A 10, or 20 year charge with no minimum? Does that matter in sentencing?Can anyone share what happened in their case?

10-24-2003, 04:03 PM
If you have 0-1 criminal history points, you can be sentenced without regard to the mandatory minimum. This comes in handy, especially if the mandatory minimum says 10 years, but the weight of the drugs comes up to be somewhere around the 3-5 year range. If you are eligible for safety valve, you can get 2 levels off...if you debrief completely (and the AUSA agrees), they can grant you an additional 3 levels off. These departures are not additional ones that will trigger a report to Ashcroft (BTW, I hear that office is so overwhelmed with paper that they stack them in hall in boxes -- they're getting 5,000+ reports/month!). These departures are not a guarantee, but normally if the prosecution agrees, you can have them. The 5k1 departures for substantial assistance are maybes at best...the 5k2 departures will almost always trigger the report & the judges may or may not feel like giving them.

My husband had no criminal history points and is facing a 10 year mandatory minimum...he will probably get 37-48 months based on the weight of the drug involved. There is hope too...if he gets the drug program (likely), then he could probably be home in about 19 months (with good-time, etc.) He gets sentenced on Nov. 4th, so keep us in your prayers!

10-25-2003, 08:50 AM
Yes I think that the senteces are to harsh min was sentenced to 57 months ans i think that is way to harsh, he is also a first time offender..

10-26-2003, 07:53 PM
My husband- 1st time offender- 97 mos, conspiracy with intent to deliever- NO proof just hearsay he was not the only one to get sentenced there was 27 co-defendants getting anywhere from life down to 2 years. Now that was a good year for the FEDS!!!!!!!!!

09-24-2004, 08:20 AM
Anyone have a guess or opinion on this situation..??
My family member was chrged w/ conspiracy w/ intent to deliver and pretty good amount of marijuana, and got a 65 month sentence and went in last October 31. A little more than 2 months later, 3 guys that were running my family member's legitimate business were arrested on trafficking in marijuana. Recent rumor is that one of the three said that my family member set the trafficking operation up and ran it a little before he went in, and that my family member will get a longer sentence. My family member said he hasn't heard anything from his lawyer as to any trouble and denies any involvement. Would my family member know by now if they are taking the one of the three serious and are going to do anything further to my family member? What is the chance that the feds would go easier on the one based on talking about someone already in prison. Wouldn't they only want someone new to arrest??

09-24-2004, 08:22 AM
hi all how true all of this is. My ex the da recommended he do only three years and the judge overruled it and gave him three and a half. Then my ex sister in law just recieved 30 years in okla and two other friends just got 30 years for first conviction. So its really not up to anyone but where you are who gets you and what they want to do I think. While i was in dallas county they had 14 people on fed charges for no dope only 99 phone conversations ove a period of 2 years and they gave them from 14 to 99 years fed time.They estimated how much they sold on the phone is all they had. So watch all of them even my lawyer admitted that him and the cops split the money they found in my house to a friend on the phone but hey what can you do i was still doing time. But he was killed about a month before i got out so i fighuare god don't like ugly so he got his. Hope it all works out for you