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United States District Court for the District of Oregon
June 14, 2018, Decided; June 14, 2018, Filed
Case No. 3:15-cr-238-SI
OPINION AND ORDER ON SENTENCING
Michael H. Simon, District Judge.
Imposing a sentence on a fellow human being is one of the most difficult acts that a judge is required to perform. The judge's decision likely will affect not only the criminal defendant, but also his or her family and the victims of the crime and their families. A sentence also may affect the future safety, security, and sense of well-being of the community. In addition, a sentence should deter future criminal conduct, not only by the defendant being sentenced but also [*2] by others. In white collar cases dealing with economic crimes involving financial institutions, a sentence also may affect the confidence the public holds in those institutions as well as the government's ability effectively to regulate and supervise those institutions. Many complex factual and legal issues must be considered and balanced to find a just and appropriate sentence.
Because we live under the rule of law, judges must make decisions under objective, common, and discernable legal principles. The discretion possessed by a judge at sentencing tests the limits of this principle. Sentencing is constrained by both substantive bounds (such as statutory minimum or maximum terms) and procedural bounds (such as mandated methodology and explanatory requirements). Nevertheless, even within these bounds, there is often more than one lawful solution, which provides both the legal basis for the court's discretion and the tension between this discretion and the rule of law. In recognition of this tension, it is incumbent upon a judge to explain the bases for a criminal sentence. Others may agree or disagree with the sentence imposed, but a judge should leave no doubt about the factors that [*3] he or she has considered or the reasons for imposing a particular sentence.
Full case includes Shepard's, Headnotes, Legal Analytics from Lex Machina, and more.
2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 99922 *; 2018 WL 2986212
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, v. DAN HEINE and DIANA YATES, Defendants.
Prior History: United States v. Yates, 155 F. Supp. 3d 1127, 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 844 (D. Or., Jan. 4, 2016)
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