United States v. Andres Gomez (11th Cir. April 2020)

Sentencing – The standard for reviewing the substantive reasonableness of a sentence, including a court’s decision to run a sentence consecutively with a state-imposed sentence, is for abuse of discretion.

Andrew Gomez appealed his sentences, totaling 67 months, for illegal reentry and violating the terms of his supervised release, which the sentencing court ran consecutive to a separate, 8-year state prison sentence.

On appeal, the Court rejected Gomez’s argument that the Court should conduct a de novo review of his sentence, holding that the proper standard is for abuse of discretion, including the sentencing court’s order to run the sentence consecutive to a separate state-imposed sentence. The Court engaged in a discussion regarding which standard of review applies to procedural reasonableness versus substantive reasonableness.

Applying the 3553 factors, the Court upheld the sentence as reasonable given the circumstances of the defendant’s state law convictions, the sentencing court’s consideration of the various factors including the defendant’s total time in prison when including the state sentence.

Appeal from the Southern District of Florida

Per Curiam Opinion by Rosenbaum, J. Pryor, and Branch

Click here to read the opinion.


Tom Church

Tom is a trial and appellate lawyer focusing on criminal defense and civil trials. Tom is the author of "The Federal Docket" and is a contributor to Mercer Law Review's Annual Survey in the areas of federal sentencing guidelines and criminal law. Tom graduated with honors from the University of Georgia Law School where he served as a research assistant to the faculty in the areas of constitutional law and civil rights litigation. Read Tom's reviews on AVVO. Follow Tom on Linkedin.

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