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Biden Administration Considering Clemency for Non-Violent Drug Offenders on Home Confinement

By Steven P. Berne |

The New York Times reported that the Biden administration is considering at least one measure to keep some inmates out of prison and on home confinement for the duration of their sentences. President Biden is reportedly considering using his clemency powers to commute the sentences of certain inmates on home confinement who were convicted of… Read More »

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Department of Justice Announces Investigation Into Conditions of Georgia State Prisons

By Steven P. Berne |

The Justice Department announced today that it has opened a statewide civil investigation into conditions of confinement of prisoners held in Georgia’s prisons. “Individuals sentenced to prison in Georgia Department of Corrections facilities deserve to be treated humanely,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Kurt R. Erskine.  “Our office is committed to ensuring state prisoners are… Read More »

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Steady Drop in Federal Prosecutions for Marijuana Trafficking

By Steven P. Berne |

There has been a significant and consistent drop in marijuana trafficking cases at the federal level since at least 2016. In 2016, there were at least 3,422 marijuana trafficking cases. In 2020, there were 1,118, and each year showed a steady decline. The top districts for the highest number of marijuana trafficking cases were… Read More »

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Court Grants Compassionate Release Based on Changes in Marijuana Laws

By Steven P. Berne |

A judge released an inmate from prison after finding that recent changes in marijuana laws presented “extraordinary and compelling circumstances” warranting the inmate’s release. The court sentenced a defendant in April 2021 after a jury found him guilty of growing marijuana and using a firearm in 2012. Soon after it imposed the mandatory minimum… Read More »

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BOP Does Not Have Immediate Plans to Send Inmates on Home Confinement Back to Prison

By Steven P. Berne |

BOP Director Michael Carvajal testified before Congress and stated that the BOP does not have any immediate plans to send the 4,000+ inmates on home confinement back to prison.At the same time, however, Director Carvajal did not rule out the possibility of sending them back to prison later, and he testified that Congress must pass a… Read More »

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How to Navigate the Federal Prison System

By Steven P. Berne |

The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers’ Corrections Committee released an important new online resource, “How to Navigate the Federal Prison System“. The guide is especially crucial and timely resources for attorneys, family members of incarcerated individuals, and the public.        

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New Proposed Law Will Lower the Amount of Time Served for Older or Medically Ill Inmates

By Steven P. Berne |

A group of U.S. senators is pushing to expand compassionate release eligibility for elderly federal inmates during the pandemic and beyond. The COVID-19 Safer Detention Act of 2021 seeks to bring parts of the First Step Act in line with the pandemic’s impact on the U.S. Bureau of Prisons’ elderly population. The bill would… Read More »

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Second Chance Law Now in Effect

By Steven P. Berne |

The Second Chance Act of 2020 is designed to expand Georgia record restriction law to include certain misdemeanor and felony convictions. It also created incentives for employers to hire those whose convictions had been expunged. If you have been convicted of a single misdemeanor, or a series of misdemeanors relating to a single incident,… Read More »

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What Joe Biden’s Election Means for the Future of Criminal Justice

By Steven P. Berne |

In light Joe Biden’s apparent election to serve as the 46th president of the United States, the Marshall Project has published a detailed review of President-Elect Biden’s criminal justice platform, which the Marshall Project notes was “quietly” the “most progressive criminal justice platform of any majority party candidate in generations.” Joe Biden will likely… Read More »

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U.S. IMPRISONMENT RATE AT ITS LOWEST SINCE 1995

By Steven P. Berne |

The combined state and federal imprisonment rate of 419 sentenced prisoners per 100,000 U.S. residents in 2019 was the lowest imprisonment rate since 1995, the Bureau of Justice Statistics announced today. The imprisonment rate in 2019 marked a 17% decrease from 2009 and a 3% decrease from 2018, and it marked the 11th consecutive… Read More »

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