Friday, February 6, 2009

Yes, People Really Do Go to Prison

The January 2009 Report - Alternative Sentencing in the Federal Criminal Justice System sends a clear message that people really do go to prison in the U.S.  The report states that "[d]espite the availability of alternative sentencing options for nearly one-fourth of federal offenders, federal courts most often impose prison for offenders in each of the sentencing table zones." 

And for those who believe that white collar offenders seldom face prison, the study shows that "[o]ffenders convicted of fraud and other white collar offenses, while still primarily sentenced to prison, also more often are sentenced to alternatives; approximately one-third of fraud and white collar offenders are sentenced to prison alternatives."  That means that about 2/3 must be going to prison. What is not stated here, however, is how white collar is defined.  Does it include RICO and money laundering offenses?

See also Doug Berman, Sentencing Law & Policy Blog here


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