AG Garland Empowered Himself to Keep Convicts Free

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The U.S. Justice Department on Tuesday announced that prisoners released due to COVID would not have to come back to prison.

So, what happened to the rule of law? These are people who put the police at risk when they committed crimes and were subsequently arrested. Prosecutors put taxpayers’ time and money into their cases and juries gave up their time to put them away. But Garland gave himself the power to ignore all that and set them free.

The decision represents a major reversal for the department’s Office of Legal Counsel, which previously had issued an opinion that said the Bureau of Prisons had no legal authority to keep inmates at home once the pandemic emergency had subsided.

This is all about giving the leftist criminal justice advocacy groups what they want which is to ignore the crimes of people they consider guilty of low-level crimes.

“Thousands of people on home confinement have reconnected with their families, have found gainful employment, and have followed the rules,” Attorney General Merrick Garland said in a statement.

In 2020, Congress passed the CARES Act, which broadened the Justice Department’s authority to release low-level inmates into home confinement during the pandemic to ease crowding and reduce the spread of COVID-19.

In January of this year, the department’s Office of Legal Counsel found that once the emergency is lifted, the federal Bureau of Prisons “must recall prisoners in home confinement to correctional facilities” if they do not otherwise qualify to remain at home.

Dozens of advocacy groups including the American Civil Liberties Union, the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, the Justice Action Network, and FAMM – a group that opposes mandatory minimum sentences – have urged the Justice Department to overturn that opinion.

They pressed the White House to use its clemency powers to commute the sentences of those who were sent home.

Garland said on Tuesday that he is also planning to direct the BOP to establish a rule allowing them to remain free. That’s a big change alteration of our justice system.


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