A young man who lived along the border of Nogales Arizona and Nogales Mexico was arrested and charged by federal authorities with Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute 100 Kilograms or More of Marijuana. The man was caught or recorded on tape during the course of a multi-state federal wiretap investigation of a large scale drug trafficking organization operating in Massachusetts and the greater Boston area. The organization derived its source of supply for large shipments of marijuana from Arizona which originated across the border in Mexico. The young man was recorded on a number of phone calls discussing the sale delivery and shipment of marijuana in quantities of up to one thousand (1000) pounds. Based on the recorded phone calls the man was apprehended by Arizona and federal law enforcement authorities and ultimately extradited to Massachusetts for criminal prosecution in Federal Court or U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts.
At the time of his arrest and extradition the government charged the man with a drug offense under federal law that provided for a mandatory minimum jail sentence of five (5) years or sixty months (60) and a maximum potential jail sentence of forty (40) years or four hundred eighty (480) months if convicted. The government also portrayed the man as a leader manager or organizer in the Mexico/Arizona based organization that supplied large scale dealers in Massachusetts. Faced with these serious charges and a potentially lengthy jail sentence the man and his family retained former Special Assistant U.S. Attorney and now full-time federal criminal defense lawyer Attorney John L. Calcagni III to represent him. Though the man ultimately pleaded guilty Attorney Calcagni successfully negotiated a pretrial agreement with the government on his behalf that did not involve a mandatory minimum jail sentence. Rather than a potential jail sentence range of five (5) to forty (40) years Attorney Calcagni also successfully negotiated a much lower range of zero (0) to five (5) years.
Attorney Calcagni expertly prepared a presentation of extenuating and mitigating evidence on his clientӳ behalf at sentencing. Preparation involved traveling to Arizona and Mexico to interview the manӳ wife children parents siblings cousins friends and other loved ones. Attorney Calcagni also conducted a full background investigation of this client that included the aforementioned interviews documenting his family and life via photographs education records employment history and investigating his character. Attorney Calcagni then assembled this information into a booklet and filed it with the Court as part of a sentencing memorandum. At the time of sentencing Attorney Calcagni referenced these materials during his argument on the manӳ behalf and in support of a requested sentence of time served which was equivalent to a jail sentence of twenty two (22) months. The government opposed this request. Notwithstanding the governmentӳ opposition the Court did not accept much of the governmentӳ arguments in support of a higher sentence. Rather the Court commented on the good work and arguments of Attorney Calcagni; the manӳ support from family and friends; his children from whom he had been separated for more than almost two years while in pretrial custody; his lack of a criminal record; his educational and employment background; and clear remorse for his admitted misconduct. Based on these collective circumstances viewed in the context of the sentencing framework provided by law the Court ultimately sentenced the man to twenty six (26) months which is only 60 days more than the sentence suggested by Attorney Calcagni. Congratulations to this client who will return home to his family and loved ones in Arizona and Mexico in less than two months.