April 02, 2012
On March 28, 2012, the Supreme Court announced its decision in Sester v. U.S. The question in this case was whether a federal court can order that a federal criminal sentence begin to run after the criminal defendant finishes serving an anticipated state sentence that that has not yet been imposed by the state court.
In an opinion delivered by Justice Scalia, the Court held by a vote of 6-3 that a federal court has discretion to impose such a sentence, and affirmed the judgment of the lower courts. Justice Breyer filed a dissenting opinion, which was joined by Justices Kennedy and Ginsburg.
To discuss the case, we have Allison Larsen, who is an Assistant Professor of Law at William and Mary Law School.