United States District Court, S.D. Georgia, Dublin Division
captioned criminal matter, Defendant Anthony V. Coneway has
filed pro se motions to reduce his sentence. The
Government opposes the motions. The Court resolves the matter
was convicted by a federal jury in 2002 on one count of
distribution of cocaine hydrochloride; one count of
distribution of 50 grams or more of cocaine base ("crack
cocaine"); and one count of conspiracy to possess with
intent to distribute and to distribute less than 500 grams of
cocaine hydrochloride and 50 grams or more of crack cocaine.
At sentencing on April 24, 2003, the Presentence
Investigation Report ("PSI") attributed 78.6 grams
of crack cocaine to Defendant. At that time, this amount of
crack cocaine carried a statutory minimum sentence of ten
years and statutory maximum sentence of life imprisonment. 21
U.S.C. § 841(b)(1)(A) (2003). The Court determined
Defendant's guideline range to be 121 to 151 months
imprisonment. Defendant was sentenced to serve 144 months
imprisonment on each count, to be served concurrently and to
be followed by five years of supervised release.
5, 2008, the Court granted Defendant's motion for a
reduction of sentence under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2) based
upon Amendment 706 to the United States Sentencing
Guidelines, which lowered the base offense level assigned to
each threshold quantity of crack cocaine by two levels.
Amendment 706 reduced Defendant's guideline range to 97
to 121 months. The Court reduced Defendant's sentence to
108 months, which was below the mandatory minimum range
prescribed by statute for the crack cocaine offense. The
Government did not appeal.
October 8, 2010, Defendant was released from federal custody.
On June 27, 2014, while on supervised release, Defendant was
arrested in Arizona after state authorities discovered
approximately 662 pounds of marijuana in a tractor-trailer
driven by Defendant. This Court issued a warrant to be lodged
as a detainer with the Arizona state authorities for
violation of Defendant's supervised release. Defendant
was subsequently sentenced to a term of imprisonment in the
State of Arizona. Upon his release from state custody,
Defendant was arrested and transported to this District. On
December 17, 2018, this Court revoked Defendant's term of
supervised release and sentence him to 24 months of
present, Defendant has filed two motions for sentence
reduction. Both motions effectively seek application of the
Fair Sentencing Act of 2010, Pub. L. No. 111-220, 124 Stat.
2372 (2010), which was signed by the President on August 3,
2010 - one month prior to Defendant's release from
federal prison on the original drug offenses.
Fair Sentencing Act reduced the crack-to-powder cocaine
disparity from 100-to-l to 18-to-l. Section 2 of the Fair
Sentencing Act increased the quantities of crack cocaine
necessary to trigger the statutory mandatory minimums for
violations of 21 U.S.C. § 841. Section 2, however, did
not apply retroactively until Congress recently passed the
First Step Act of 2018, Pub. L. No. 115-391, 132 Stat. 5194.
Section 404 of the First Step Act makes retroactive the
modified statutory penalties of Section 2 of the Fair
Sentencing Act, allowing courts to reduce sentences as if
Section 2 were in effect at the time the covered offense was
Fair Sentencing Act also instructed the United States
Sentencing Commission to conform the applicable guideline
provisions. Accordingly, the Commission promulgated
conforming emergency Guideline amendments, effective on
November 1, 2010; a permanent version of those Guidelines
took effect on November 1, 2011. These Amendments were
promulgated after Defendant had completed his term of
imprisonment for distribution of crack cocaine.
revocation hearing in December 2018 and again in his present
motions, Defendant contends that he never received the
benefit of the 18-to-l ratio that came about as a result of
the Fair Sentencing Act. A court, however, may only modify a
term of imprisonment a) if the term of imprisonment is based
upon a sentencing range that has subsequently been lowered by
the Sentencing Commission, 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c) (2), or
b) "to the extent otherwise expressly permitted by
statute, '' 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(1)(B).
Importantly, the term of imprisonment that Defendant is
serving is not based upon his distribution of crack cocaine.
Rather, it is a separate and distinct offense, i.e., a
violation of supervised release. The sentencing range upon
which it is based has not been subsequently lowered by the
Sentencing Commission, and there is no other statute that
would permit a reduction of his sentence. To the extent that
Defendant is seeking application of the lower sentencing
guidelines promulgated pursuant to the Fair Sentencing Act,
the United States Sentencing Commission has stated the
following with respect to the application of amended
Only a term of imprisonment imposed as part of the
original sentence is authorized to be reduced under this
section. This section does not authorize a reduction
in the term of imprisonment imposed upon revocation of
See U.S.S.G. § 1B1.10 cmt. n.7(a) (emphasis
short, Defendant is not entitled to a sentence reduction
through application of the Fair Sentencing Act, the amended
guideline ranges promulgated thereunder, or the First Step
Act. These changes in the law simply have no effect on the
term of imprisonment he is currently serving based upon
revocation of supervised release. ...