Application of the Federal Sentencing Guidelines to Organizations in Antitrust Cases: A Practical Guide


Prior to 1987, the sentence imposed on a federal criminal defendant in the United States was left largely to the discretion of the sentencing judge. In 1984, Congress passed the Sentencing Reform Act, delegating broad authority to the United States Sentencing Commission. In 2005, the mandatory sentencing under the Guidelines changed again as a result of a United States Supreme Court decision. Today, federal judges must consider, but are not bound by, the Sentencing Guidelines. Still, many district court judges are hewing closely to the Guidelines. As such, one should not wait to engage in an analysis of the Guidelines application to a potential corporate antitrust offense.  In this article, Antitrust Partner Kathleen Beasley reviews the Guidelines and provides analysis of their application.

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