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Brian Young Defense Sentencing Memo

Brian Young Defense Sentencing Memo

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Published by Emily Babay

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Published by: Emily Babay on Nov 23, 2011
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10/02/2013

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IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURTFOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF VIRGINIAAlexandria Division_______________________________________)UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, ))v.
 
) Case No: 1:11-CR-00061-GBL)BRIAN W. YOUNG, ) The Hon. Gerald Bruce Lee)Defendant. ) Sentencing Date: July 15, 2011_______________________________________)DEFENDANT’S MEMORANDUM IN AID OF SENTENCING
The defendant, Brian Young, pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit moneylaundering on April 26, 2011. He will appear before the Court for sentencing on July 15, 2011.Through undersigned counsel, Mr. Young respectfully submits this memorandum as an aid to theCourt’s sentencing decision. As the Court is aware,
United States v. Booker 
, 125 S. Ct. 738(2005), rendered the United States Sentencing Guidelines advisory in order to remedy the SixthAmendment violation that resulted from a mandatory Guidelines system. The applicableadvisory Guidelines range is merely one factor that the Court must consider when imposingsentence. The Court “may not presume that the Guidelines range is reasonable.”
Gall v. United States
, 128 S. Ct. 586, 596-597 (2007). Specifically, the Court’s duty is to consider all of thefactors identified in 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a) and to “impose a sentence sufficient, but not greaterthan necessary” to comply with the purposes of sentencing set forth in the statute.
See
18 U.S.C.§ 3553(a).As discussed below, the advisory Guidelines range in this case far exceeds a level that is“sufficient, but not greater than necessary” to serve the purposes of federal sentencing was relateto the circumstances of this case and characteristics of Mr. Young. Based on the history and
Case 1:11-cr-00061-GBL Document 49 Filed 07/08/11 Page 1 of 19 PageID# 295
 
 2characteristics of Mr. Young, the nature and circumstances of his offenses, and the objectives of federal sentencing, Mr. Young asks the Court to reject the advisory Guidelines range in this caseas excessive. Mr. Young is not subject to a statutory mandatory minimum period of incarceration. He respectfully asks the Court impose a sentence not exceed one year and one dayin prison.
ARGUMENT
Brian Young turned 40 years old earlier this week. He pled guilty to one count of moneylaundering in violation of 18 U.S.C § 1956(h). Prior to this year, Mr. Young had never beenarrested. As the Court is aware, Mr. Young has been battling addiction to heroin for more than 5years. His addiction has destroyed his life. It has devastated his family. He will be a convictedfelon. He has lost his legal career and standing in the community as a member of the Bar of theState of Maryland. Mr. Young understands that he is to blame for the collateral consequences of his actions. Despite all of these difficult circumstances, Mr. Young is continually grateful thathe has the strong support of family members and friends. The individuals in this network havefirst-hand knowledge of the gentle manner and strong work ethic that Mr. Young has exhibitedthroughout his life and have shared their insights with the Court to assist in fashioning anappropriate sentence. See Letters of support and character reference, included hereto asAttachment A.Mr. Young recognizes the gravity of the offense to which he pled guilty and understandsthat he must be punished for a period of time. We respectfully submit that in this case, thepurposes of federal sentencing can be fully served by a more lenient sentence than recommendedby the Guidelines.
Case 1:11-cr-00061-GBL Document 49 Filed 07/08/11 Page 2 of 19 PageID# 296
 
 3
I. The Advisory Sentencing Guidelines Range
Under post-
 Booker 
federal sentencing, the Court must first calculate theapplicable advisory Guidelines range.
United States v. Pauley
, 511 F.3d 468, 473 (4
th
Cir. 2007)(citing
Gall
, 128 S. Ct. at 596-597). As the Court is aware, the parties contemplated a pleaagreement that would have a Guideline range fixed at 24 to 30 months, or a base offense level of 17. In her Presentence Report (PSR), the probation officer has calculated the advisory Guidelinerange at 57 to 71 months, based on a total offense level of 25 and Criminal History in Category I.The PSR calculation includes a six-level increase for laundering funds that were theproceeds of a controlled substance offense. It also includes an additional two-level enhancementfor abuse of a position of trust U.S.S.G. § 3B1.3. Of course, these calculations were not part of the agreement by the parties. These increases more than double the low end of the originalGuidelines range in the Plea Agreement. For the reasons that follow, we respectfully submit thatthe abuse of position of trust is not an appropriate enhancement given the unique facts of thiscase.As a threshold matter, the abuse of a position of trust enhancement is highly duplicativeto that of the two-level increase for sophisticated laundering agreed to by the parties. The abuseof position of trust Guideline expressly “may not be employed if an abuse of trust or skill isincluded in the base offense level or specific offense characteristic.” U.S.S.G. §3B1.3. Even if the Court were to find that the sophisticated laundering increase does not bar consideration of theabuse of trust enhancement, Mr. Young neither abused trust nor used a special skill in theconspiracy to commit money laundering. As detailed in the government’s statement of facts, hisconduct amounted to twice depositing money into a bank account and writing checks from thataccount to two other lawyers. The government argues that he violated the Maryland Rules of 
Case 1:11-cr-00061-GBL Document 49 Filed 07/08/11 Page 3 of 19 PageID# 297

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