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Old 05-12-2018, 09:06 AM
Laura1990 Laura1990 is offline
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Default Please help! Federal guidelines for dismissed charges

Hi everyone, I'm new here!

My brother has been arrested over 6 months ago. He has been charged with 16 counts of robberies, 4 of them were bank robberies so he's with the Feds.

He's just been offered a plea deal last week which offers him to plea guilty to 2 of the bank robberies and get a cap of 71 months.

In general I think this deal sounds really fair considering the amount of initial charges. Are we understanding right that a cap of 71 months means that the max he can get is 71 months?
If I'm understanding everything right the sentencing guidelines for 2 bank robberies should be level 24 minus 2 points for acceptance of responsibility which would end up being 41-51 months.
So we don't understand where the 71 month cap is coming from. His public defender ist absolute useless, he's busy with a murder trial and said he doesn't know why the prosecution went for the 71 month cap.
I've been reading that in the federal system even dismissed charges can be used for the sentencing guidelines but from what I understood this only applies to groupable charges and robbery is non groupable.

I guess my question is if the 71 months cap is just the max possible sentence and the sentencing guidelines for the 2 robberies should apply or if the sentence guidelines will consider all 16 robberies even though he only pleads guilty to 2 of them?

Really grateful for any answers!
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Old 05-12-2018, 12:11 PM
fbopnomore fbopnomore is online now
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Plea agreements offered by the prosecutors still have to be accepted by the sentencing judge. Also, sentencing guidelines were mandatory until the US Supreme Court ruled that they are only "advisory" for the judge. That means that the judge has the ability to sentence everyone from zero (unless the charge carries a mandatory minimum sentence) to the maximum cumulative sentence for each charge, served consecutively. Even so, most cases are resolved with the judge accepting the negotiated sentence.

His lawyer can argue that the guideline range is only 41 months, but the prosecutor can then explain what the guidelines would be for all 16 counts. The dropping of the 14 other charges is also part of the plea bargain, which can be withdrawn by the prosecutor at any time until the sentence is imposed.

Bank robberies often result in 10 years, or more of prison time.
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