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Tue May 4, 2021, 03:36 PM

Supreme Court Weighs Crack Cocaine Sentencing Disparity [View all]

Source: NPR

The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments Tuesday on a case involving sentencing disparities between people found guilty of possessing crack versus powdered forms of cocaine, and whether recent changes in federal law should apply retroactively to those given long prison terms for small amounts of crack.

The cases stems from changes to the 1986 Anti Drug Abuse Act, which put in place sentences for crack cocaine possession 100 times more severe than for the powered form of the drug. The disparity was seen by many as a racially motivated, as those sentenced for crack possession were proportionally more likely to be Black.

In 2010 Congress and the Obama administration amended the law to reduce the sentencing disparities between the two forms of cocaine to 18-1, and in 2018 lawmakers and the Trump administration made the change retroactive, affecting those still serving time under the original statute.

But Congress left out sentences for low levels of crack from the retroactive provision, and justices across the ideological spectrum indicated Tuesday they were skeptical that the court could change that.

Read more: https://www.npr.org/2021/05/04/993518328/supreme-court-weighs-crack-cocaine-sentencing-disparity

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Reply Supreme Court Weighs Crack Cocaine Sentencing Disparity [View all]
Polybius May 2021 OP
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