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United States of America v. William Clifford

March 23, 2012

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
WILLIAM CLIFFORD,
DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Helen Gillmor United States District Judge

ORDER GRANTING THE GOVERNMENT'S RULE 35(b) MOTION FOR DOWNWARD DEPARTURE IN SENTENCING (DOC. 54)

On February 1, 2012, the Government filed a Motion for Downward Departure in Sentencing pursuant to Rule 35(b) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure. (Doc. 54). Defendant William Clifford is serving a sentence of 240 months imprisonment for attempting to possess with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine. (Doc. 51). The Government requests a reduction of Defendant's sentence on the ground that the Defendant has provided substantial assistance in the investigation and prosecution of another person, and recommends that his sentenced be reduced by 12 months. The Defendant argues that a 12 month reduction in his sentence does not sufficiently reflect the value of his assistance, and requests that his sentence be reduced by 96 months.

The Government's Motion (Doc. 54) is GRANTED. Defendant's sentence is reduced by 12 months.

PROCEDURAL HISTORY

On March 17, 2011, Defendant William Clifford pled guilty to attempting to possess with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine. (Doc. 37).

On December 8, 2011, Defendant was sentenced to 240 months imprisonment, followed by 10 years of supervised release. (Doc. 50).

On February 1, 2012, the Government filed a Motion for Downward Departure in Sentencing pursuant to Rule 35(b) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure. (Doc. 54).

On February 8, 2012, Defendant filed a Response. (Doc. 55). On February 10, 2012, Defendant filed a Supplemental Response. (Doc. 56).

Pursuant to Local Rule 7.2(d), the Court elected to decide the Motion without a hearing.

STANDARD

Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 35(b)(1) provides:

(1) In General. Upon the government's motion made within one year of sentencing, the court may reduce a sentence if the defendant, after sentencing, provided substantial assistance in investigating or prosecuting another person.

A Rule 35 motion is essentially a plea for leniency and is addressed to the sound discretion of the district court. United States v. Smith, 964 F.2d 885, 887 (9th Cir. 1992); United ...


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