Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Paulsen et al vs Daniels,

No. 03-35337 (6-27-05). The BOP ran afoul of there requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) in the formulation of an interim regulation concerning eligibility for early release for federal inmates who had completed a drug abuse program. Prisoners who were felons in possession were classified as "violent" offenders and deemed ineligible. Thew 9th found that the BOP plainly violate the APA in its rush to get these interim regs out by issuing the rule first and seeking comment later. The BOP argues that it was harmless, but the 9th emphasizes that the APA is designed to get public feedback, and that the terms are strictly adhered to. The petitioners also have standing. The result of this is to make the petitioners eligible for relief as the interim rule was found to be invalid. The finial regs however, closes the window on those that would get relief as it is not invalid. Only a few felons-in-possession will benefit.
Congrats to AFPD Steve Sady of D. Ore for his dogged work on this.


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