United States District Court, D. Rhode Island
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
M. Lisi Senior, United States District Judge.
the Court is a Motion for Minimal Role Adjustment and
Sentence Reduction Based on United States v. Quintero-Leyva
and Pursuant to Amendment 794 and 28 U.S.C. § 2255 (Doc.
#22) (“Motion for Minimal Role Adjustment”) filed
by Petitioner Juan Espejo Sanchez (“Espejo
Sanchez”). The Government filed an objection (Doc.
#25) (“Objection”) and memorandum in support
thereof (Doc. #25-1) (“Gov't Mem.”), to which
Espejo Sanchez filed an initial response (Doc. #26)
(“First Response to Objection”) and a second
response (Doc. #27) (“Second Response to
Objection”). No hearing is necessary.
BACKGROUND AND TRAVEL
9, 2014, Espejo Sanchez pled guilty to one count of
conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute fifty
grams or more of methamphetamine, in violation of 21 U.S.C.
§§ 841(a)(1), 841(b)(1)(B), and 846. He was
sentenced to 72 months incarceration, followed by supervised
release for ten years. Judgment entered on June 16, 2014.
Pursuant to the Plea Agreement (Doc. #2), Espejo Sanchez did
not file a direct appeal.
Sanchez subsequently filed a Motion to Set Aside and Vacate
Sentence Pursuant to 2255 or in the Alternative Federal Rules
of Criminal Procedure 60(b)(1)-(6) (Doc. #8) (“Motion
to Vacate”) and supplement thereto (Doc. #13)
(“Supplemental Motion to Vacate”). The Motion to
Vacate, as supplemented, was denied by the Court on January
two years after filing the Motion to Vacate, Espejo Sanchez
filed the instant Motion for Minimal Role
Sanchez “asserts eligibility under §3B1.2's
amendment 794 as being substantially less culpable than the
average participant in the criminal activity.” Motion
for Minimal Role Adjustment at 7. The Government objects on
the basis that: (1) the Motion for Minimal Role Adjustment is
untimely, Gov't Mem. at 2; (2) the Court of Appeals for
the First Circuit “has indicated that § 2255 is
not an appropriate vehicle for reopening a sentence in every
circumstance where a defendant merely claims that his
guidelines sentencing range should have been calculated
differently, ” id. (citing Cuevas v.
United States, 778 F.3d 267, 276 (1st Cir. 2015)); and
(3) even if timely and cognizable, the claim fails on the
merits, id. at 3. The Court need not address the
Government's second and third arguments, as the first is
dispositive of the matter.
Section 2255 and AEDPA
the grounds justifying relief under 28 U.S.C. § 2255 are
limited. A court may grant such relief only if it finds a
lack of jurisdiction, a constitutional error, or a
fundamental error of law. See United States v.
Addonizio, 442 U.S. 178, 185 (1979)(“[A]n error of
law does not provide a basis for collateral attack unless the
claimed error constituted a fundamental defect which
inherently results in a complete miscarriage of
justice.”)(internal quotation marks omitted).
2255 states that:
(a) A prisoner in custody under sentence of a court
established by Act of Congress claiming the right to be
released upon the ground that the sentence was imposed in
violation of the Constitution or laws of the United States,
or that the court was without jurisdiction to impose such
sentence, or that the sentence was in excess of the maximum
authorized by law, or is otherwise subject to collateral
attack, may move the court which imposed the sentence to
vacate, set aside or correct the sentence.
28 U.S.C. § 2255(a).
1996, Congress enacted the Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death
Penalty Act (“AEDPA”), which “imposed
significant new constraints on proceedings under section
2255.” Trenkler v. United States, 536 F.3d 85,
96 (1st Cir. 2008)(footnote omitted). “Some of these
constraints were temporal; for example, AEDPA established a
one-year statute of limitations for filing a section 2255
petition.” Id. (citing 28 U.S.C. §
2255(f)). Others were numerical, requiring a ...