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New Federal Law Proposed to Make Federal Criminal Sentences for Crack Cocaine Crimes Equal to Powder Cocaine Crimes

We have written before about how people who commit crack cocaine crimes in federal court receive higher sentences than people who commit similar crimes involving powder cocaine. In other words, in order to get a similar sentence in certain situations, it would take the possession of much more powder cocaine than crack cocaine. The Obama administration has indicated an intention to eliminate this sentencing disparity in federal criminal courts.

A new law is also being considered that would establish equal sentences for crack cocaine and powder cocaine crimes. The new law would lower the crack cocaine sentences to the current powder cocaine level instead of the inverse. If and when this law passes, people charged and convicted of crack cocaine crimes in federal court will be exposed to lower sentencing ranges that are in line with those of powder cocaine crimes.