Criminal Law

Appendix B - Selected Sentencing Statutes

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Appendix BGUIDELINES MANUALNovember 1, 2005

the Parole Commission, each reference in such section to ‘ten years’ or ‘ten-year period’ shall be deemed to be a reference to ‘fifteen years’ or ‘fifteen-year period’, respectively."]

[Pub.L. 101-650, Title III, § 316, Dec. 1, 1990, 104 Stat. 5115, provided that: "For the purposes of section 235(b) of Public Law 98-473 [set out as a note under this section] as it relates to chapter 311 of title 18, United States Code [section 4201 et seq. of this title], and the United States Parole Commission, each reference in such section to ‘five years’ or a ‘five-year period’ shall be deemed a reference to ‘ten years’ or a ‘ten-year period’, respectively."]

Sentencing Considerations Prior to Enactment of Guidelines. Section 239 of Pub.L. 98-473, Title II, c. II, Oct. 12, 1984, 98 Stat. 2039, provided:

"Since, due to an impending crisis in prison over-crowding, available Federal prison space must be treated as a scarce resource in the sentencing of criminal defendants;

"Since, sentencing decisions should be designed to ensure that prison resources are, first and foremost, reserved for those violent and serious criminal offenders who pose the most dangerous threat to society;

"Since, in cases of nonviolent and nonserious offenders, the interests of society as a whole as well as individual victims of crime can continue to be served through the imposition of alternative sentences, such as restitution and community service;

"Since, in the two years preceding the enactment of sentencing guidelines, Federal sentencing practice should ensure that scarce prison resources are available to house violent and serious criminal offenders by the increased use of restitution, community service, and other alternative sentences in cases of nonviolent and nonserious offenders: Now, therefore, be it

"Declared, That it is the sense of the Senate that in the two years preceding the enactment of the sentencing guidelines, Federal judges, in determining the particular sentence to be imposed, consider—

"(1) the nature and circumstances of the offense and the history and characteristics of the defendant; "(2) the general appropriateness of imposing a sentence other than imprisonment in cases in which the defendant has not been convicted of a crime of violence or otherwise serious offense; and

"(3) the general appropriateness of imposing a sentence of imprisonment in cases in which the defendant has been convicted of a crime of violence or otherwise serious offense."

§ 3552. Presentence reports

(a) Presentence investigation and report by probation officer.-A United States probation officer shall make a presentence investigation of a defendant that is required pursuant to the provisions of Rule 32(c) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, and shall, before the imposition of sentence, report the results of the investigation to the court.

(b) Presentence study and report by bureau of prisons.-If the court, before or after its receipt of a report specified in subsection (a) or (c), desires more information than is otherwise available to it as a basis for determining the sentence to be imposed on a defendant found guilty of a misdemeanor or felony, it may order a study of the defendant. The study shall be conducted in the local community by qualified consultants unless the sentencing judge finds that there is a compelling reason for the study to be done by the Bureau of Prisons or there are no adequate professional resources available in the local community to perform the study. The period of the study shall be no more than sixty days. The order shall specify the additional information that the court needs before determining the sentence to be imposed. Such an order shall be treated for administrative purposes as a provisional sentence of imprisonment for the maximum term authorized by section 3581(b) for the offense committed. The study shall inquire into such matters as are specified by the court and any other matters that the Bureau of Prisons or the professional consultants believe are pertinent to the factors set forth in section 3553(a). The period of the study may, in the discretion of the court, be

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