UPDATE 1-US Justice Department Announces Clemency Review Of Drug Offenders
Professor Robert Weisberg comments on the possibility of reducing sentences for criminals currently serving time for Reuters.
The U.S. Justice Department laid out new clemency guidelines on Wednesday that are expected to make thousands of drug offenders eligible for a reduction in the sentences they are currently serving.
Under the new guidelines, inmates that were sentenced under laws that have since changed, have served at least 10 years of their sentence and are nonviolent may be re-examined by the Justice Department and suggested to the president for clemency.
”Although it’s being done through the pardon power, it really is a kind of administrative action to make some of the newer laws retroactive,” said Robert Weisberg, a law professor at Stanford University and co-director of the Stanford Criminal Justice Center. “It’s almost as if they have to invent their own kind of shadow sentencing guidelines and in effect re-sentence certain people.”