WASHINGTON The Supreme Court says a man with a long criminal record deserves a lengthy prison term, under a federal law aimed at keeping repeat offenders behind bars longer.
Monday's 6-3 decision, written by Justice Samuel Alito, deals with provisions of the Armed Career Criminal Act. The law makes defendants eligible for longer prison terms if they have three prior criminal convictions for crimes that are either violent felonies or serious drug offenses.
A jury convicted Gino Gonzaga Rodriquez of possessing a gun as a convicted felon. Prosecutors said his five prior convictions two for burglary in California and three for drug trafficking in Washington should have led to a 15-year prison sentence.
But a federal judge imposed a sentence of 92 months and the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco agreed.