Criminal Defense Attorney in U.S. Federal & Illinois Courts


Nicolas Gomez Gets His Federal Sentence Reduced!

Chicago Federal Criminal Defense Attorney Michael J. Petro filed a Motion in Chicago on behalf of Nicolas Gomez to Reduce his Federal Sentence.  On April 23, 2015, Federal District Court Judge Gary Feinerman reduced Nicolas Gomez’s sentence from 84 months to 67 months.  Congratulations Nicolas! By:  Chicago Federal Criminal Defense Attorney Michael J. Petro

The 7th Circuit Is Not Happy With a Prison Sentence For Marijuana Use

U.S. v. Jesse Smith. No. 14-2223. In 2009 the defendant was sentenced to 24 months in prison, to be followed by 3 years of supervised release, for being a felon in possession of a gun. In October 2013 and in April 2014 his probation officer advised the district court that the defendant had again violated […]

Drug Penalties in Illinois

ACCURATE AS OF FEBRUARY 20, 2015 Possession of Methamphetamine’s Weight                              Statute                                                           Class                   Time 0-5 grams                          720 ILCS 646/60(b)(1)                                 Class 3                2-5 years 5-15 grams                        720 ILCS 646/60(b)(2)                                 Class 2                3-7 years 15-100 grams                     720 ILCS 646/60(b)(3)                                 Class 1                4-15 years 100-400 grams                   720 ILCS 646/60(b)(4)                                 Class X                6-30 years 400-900 grams                   720 ILCS 646/60(b)(5)                                 Class […]

Motion to Reconsider Sentence Does NOT Stop Appeal Filing Deadlines

United States v. Townsend. No. 13-2677. Background. Louis Townsend pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm as a felon and was sentenced to 71 months in prison. He challenges his sentence on several grounds, but the government questions whether the appeal is timely. Townsend’s deadline for filing a notice of appeal was July 22, 2013. On […]

Honest Services Fraud: Use of Word “Reward” In Jury Instruction Leads to Reversal

USA v. Thomas Hawkins and John W. Racasi,  No. 14-1892 & 14-1908.Thomas Hawkins and John Racasi were employed as analysts on the staff of Larry Rogers, a member of the Cook County Board of Review, when they accepted money from Ali Haleem, a corrupt Chicago police officer acting as an undercover agent. The Board of […]

Supervised Release Is Not Mandatory: New Rules Regarding Non Mandatory Conditions

United States v. Thompson, et al., No. 14-1316   In considering four consolidated cases, the Court of Appeals held that district court’s must consider the § 3553(a) factors when imposing all non-mandatory conditions of supervised release, including standard conditions of supervised release. Supervised release, in contrast to parole, consists of restrictions, imposed by the judge at […]

Chicago Federal Defense Attorney Michael J. Petro Success at Dirksen

Success at Dirksen Building. Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney Michael J. Petro fought tooth and nail against the government’s Petition for Preliminary Order of Forfeiture. The petition sought proceeds and specific property including substitute assets. The Judge listened to Mr. Petro’s arguments and dismissed the government’s petition. Savings to client $550K! By Chicago Federal Criminal Defense […]

Police Use of Lethal Force: Boilerplate Rules

Plumhoff v Rickard.     134 S,Ct. 2012 Near midnight on July 18, 2004, Lieutenant Joseph Forthman of the West Memphis, Arkansas, Police Department pulled over a white Honda Accord because the car had only one operating headlight. Donald Rickard was the driver of the Accord, and Kelly Allen was in the passenger seat. Forthman noticed an […]

USSG 2D1.1: Court’s Failure to Explicitly State Drug Quantity Leads to Reversal

United States v. Garrett.    No. 13-1182.  Background. Dwayne Garrett was found guilty of possessing with intent to distribute 50 or more grams of crack cocaine and sentenced to 190 months in prison. He appeals both his conviction and sentence. Garrett was indicted, along with more than two dozen co-defendants, and charged with possession with intent […]

Pro Se Representation: Boilerplate Rules

United States v. Daniel T. Lee.   No. 13-1976 The defendant was convicted by a jury of having committed, along with another man, four drug-related robberies of pharmacies in Milwaukee, and also of having used a firearm in connection with the robberies and having possessed a controlled substance with intent to distribute it. He was sentenced […]