United States v. Lopez, No. 10-1833 (3d Cir. 2011)Annotate this Case
After pleading guilty to illegal reentry (8 U.S.C. 1326) the defendants challenged their sentences, claiming that their Fifth Amendment rights were violated as a result of the Department of Justice "fast-track" programs that allow a departure from sentencing guidelines in return for a guilty plea and waiver of right of appeal. Such programs have been implemented in several areas, but not in any district within the Third Circuit. The Third Circuit affirmed, holding that the program is rationally related to, among others, the goals of allocating prosecutorial resources and enforcing the immigration laws. The sentences imposed on the defendants were reasonable.