Tuesday, November 01, 2011

American Justice

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A reduction in federal prison sentences for crack cocaine took effect on Tuesday in a move that could let an estimated 12,000 inmates go free early.

The changes reduce federal penalties for more addictive crack cocaine to bring them more in line with those for powdered cocaine. The sentencing disparity had long been criticized as racially discriminatory because it disproportionately affected black defendants.

Up to 1,800 inmates are immediately eligible to go free and prison officials are processing a growing number of release orders, said Chris Burke, a spokesman for the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

"The pace has picked up in the last couple of weeks and we don't expect it to abate any time soon," he said.

I'm shocked.. truly... no really.. in all the time I've been posting stories about the American judicial system, I think this is the first one that has been a positive development.

Now, if they would just release all persons imprisoned on drug possession charges, we can maybe get a more sensible policy in place. Maybe spend the money on drug education and treatment instead?

Just a thought.


Of course.. those are federal laws.. federal prisons and have nothing to do with states. I don't get why there are any federal drug laws at all.

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