Sentencing – addressing mitigating arguments

July 9, 2012

Where a sentencing court fails to address, even fleetingly, a meritorious argument in mitigation that is not a stock argument, the sentence must be vacated and remanded for consideration of that argument.

The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals vacated and remanded a decision by U.S. District Judge Rudolph T. Randa, Eastern District of Wisconsin.

Vincente Ramirez-Mendoza was part of a large drug trafficking organization. In April or May 2010, Roberto Vizcaino-Ortiz introduced Ramirez-Mendoza to his brother, Hector Vizcaino-Ortiz. Ramirez-Mendoza agreed to act as a middleman for marijuana transactions between Hector and a supplier, Jose Rodriguez. The arrangement lasted through August 2010, when Hector stopped paying Rodriguez for marijuana bought on consignment.

READ more here:

United States v. Vincente Ramirez-Mendoza
No. 11-3314

Writing for the court: Judge Michael S. Kanne
Concurring: Judges Ann Claire Williams and Ilana Diamond Rovner
Released: June 8, 2012

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