Eleventh Circuit Says that Crack Amendments to Federal Sentencing Guidelines Are Not Retroactive

According to Doug Berman’s Sentencing Law and Policy Blog, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit has held that the Amendment 706 to the Federal Sentencing guidelines is not retroactive. US v. Moore, No. 08-11230 (11th Cir. Sept. 5, 2008). The key paragraph of the decision is as follows:

In this consolidated appeal, Gary Moore, Ralph Edward Wester, Theodora Lawton, Clarence Collins, and Keith Maurice McFadden (“defendants”) appeal separate district court decisions denying their motions for reduced sentences under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2). The defendants’ motions were all based on Amendment 706 to the Sentencing Guidelines, which, together with Amendment 713, retroactively reduced the base offense levels applicable to crack cocaine offenses.  The district courts denied their motions on the ground that, because the defendants were sentenced as career offenders under U.S.S.G. § 4B1.1, Amendment 706 did not have the effect of lowering their applicable guideline ranges. We affirm.