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Criminal Law

Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

Ninth circuit

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Not All Plea Breaches Are Equal: Examining Heredia’S Extension Of Implicit Breach Analysis, Kevin Arns Apr 2016

Not All Plea Breaches Are Equal: Examining Heredia’S Extension Of Implicit Breach Analysis, Kevin Arns

Northwestern University Law Review

When the government enters into a plea agreement with a criminal defendant that stipulates that the government will give a specific sentence recommendation in exchange for the defendant’s guilty plea, it can implicitly breach that agreement by clearly distancing itself from the recommendation at the sentencing hearing. In most circuits, the implicit breach of a non-court-binding plea agreement—an agreement where the defendant is bound to the guilty plea even if the court rejects the sentence recommendation—entitles defendants to a remedy. However, in 2014, the Ninth Circuit was the first circuit to hold that a defendant is entitled ...