Plea Negotiations and Waivers: A Reminder

The Fifth Circuit started 2019 with a reminder to counsel.

In United States v. Hicks, No. 17-51101 (5th Cir. Jan. 2, 2019) (unpublished), the court cautioned counsel: “pursuing an appeal contrary to a valid waiver and without responding to the Government’s invocation of the waiver is a needless waste of judicial resources and could result in sanctions.” The defendant had appealed his 168-month, within guidelines sentence for a crack-cocaine offense. The government sought to enforce the waiver, which covered the defendant’s right to appeal “any” aspect of the defendant’s conviction or sentence. The court dismissed, finding the waiver applied.

Just another reminder for counsel to proceed with caution in negotiating plea agreements when waivers are on the table.

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