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United States v. Esparra

United States District Court, S.D. New York

October 24, 2014

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff,
v.
ALFREDO VAZQUEZ ESPARRA, Defendant.

SENTENCING OPINION

ROBERT W. SWEET, District Judge.

On April 22, 2014, Alfredo Vazquez Esparra ("Esparra" or "Defendant") pled guilty to conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute 5 kilograms and more of cocaine.

For the reasons set forth below, Esparra will be sentenced to 188 months' imprisonment followed by five years' supervised release, subject to the scheduled sentencing hearing on October 28, 2014. Defendant is also required to pay a special assessment of $100.

Prior Proceedings

Defendant was named in a one-count indictment (the "Indictment") filed in the Southern District of New York on December 18, 2012. The sole count ("Count 1") of the indictment charges that from in or about 2011 through in or about November 2012, the Defendant, and others known and unknown, conspired and possessed with intent to distribute 5 kilograms and more of cocaine, in violation of 21 U.S.C. §§ 841(a) (1) and 841 (b) (1) (A).

On April 22, 2014, Esparra appeared before the Court and pled guilty to conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute 5 kilograms and more of cocaine, in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 841 (b) (1) (A). In accordance with a Pimentel letter, the position of the United States Attorney's Office is as follows:

(a) Offense Level
(i) The November 1, 2013 Guidelines manual applies to the offense conduct.
(ii) The sentencing guideline applicable to the offense charged in Count 1 of the Indictment is U.S.S.G. § 2D1.1.
(iii) Pursuant to U.S.S.G. §§ 2D1.1(a) (5) and 2D1.1 (c) (1), because the Defendant's offense involved more than 150 kilograms of cocaine, the base offense level is 38.
(iv) Assuming the defendant clearly demonstrates acceptance of responsibility, to the satisfaction of the Government, through his allocution and subsequent conduct prior to the imposition of sentence, a two-level reduction will be warranted, pursuant to U.S.S.G. § 3E1.1(a).
In accordance with the above, the applicable Guidelines offense level is 36.
(b) Criminal History Category
Based upon the information now available to the U.S. Attorney's Office (including representations by the defense), the defendant has zero criminal history points.
In accordance with the above, the defendant's Criminal History Category is I.
(c) Sentencing Range
Based upon the calculations set forth above, the Defendant's stipulated Guidelines range is 188 to 235 months' imprisonment, with a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment, with a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of 120 months. In addition, after determining the defendant's ability to pay, the Court may impose a fine pursuant to U.S.S.G. § 5E1.2. At Guidelines level 36 the applicable fine range is $20, 000 to $10, 000.

Defendant is scheduled to be sentenced on October 28, 2014.

The Sentencing Framework

In accordance with the Supreme Court's decision in United States v. Booker , 543 U.S. 220 (2005), and the Second Circuit's decision in United States v. Crosby , 397 F.3d 103 (2d Cir. 2005), the sentence to be imposed was reached through consideration of all of the factors identified in 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a), including the Advisory Guidelines. Thus, the sentence to be imposed here is the result of a consideration of:

(1) the nature and circumstances of the offense and the history and characteristics of the defendant;
(2) the need for the sentence imposed -
(A) to reflect the seriousness of the offense, to promote respect for the law, and to provide just ...

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