Monday, April 28, 2014

Sentencing Court Not Required to Consider Similarly Situated State Defendants When Determining Sentence

US v. Wiseman, --- F.3d ----, 2014 WL 1599461 (10th Cir. April 22, 2014): The Tenth Circuit affirms the defendant's sentence. Defendant pled guilty to conspiracy to distribute oxycodone. Her guideline range was 57-71 months. The district court sentenced her to 48 months. On appeal, Defendant argued the district court committed procedural error by refusing to consider the disparity between her sentence and the sentences imposed on similarly situated defendants in Utah state court. The Tenth agreed with the district court that 18 USC 3553(a)(6) authorizes consideration of disparate sentences among and between federal defendants, and does not require consideration of sentences received by similarly situated state defendants, affirming its prior decision in US v. Branson, 463 F.3d 1110 (10th Cir. 2006).