- Court: 9th Circuit Court of Appeals Archives
- Area(s) of Law: Criminal Procedure
- Date Filed: 09-13-2022
- Case #: 21-50129
- Judge(s)/Court Below: Circuit Judge Lee, for the Court; Circuit Judges Ikuta & Forrest; concurrence by Forrest
- Full Text Opinion
Montoya was sentenced to 100 months of imprisonment plus five years of supervised release after pleading guilty to “knowingly and intentionally importing 500 grams or more of methamphetamine and cocaine.” Montoya appealed the district court’s sentencing decision, which was greater than the amount requested in her plea agreement. Montoya argued that the district court improperly rejected the plea agreement instead of allowing her the opportunity to withdraw the plea. Under Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 11(c)(3)(B), if a defendant pleads guilty, the government “will recommend, or agree not to oppose, the defendant’s request, that a particular . . . sentencing range is appropriate, but the defendant has no right to withdraw the plea if the court does not follow the recommendation or request.” The Court reasoned that Montoya could only withdraw her plea if she showed “a fair and just reason for requesting the withdrawal,” but she did not do so. Furthermore, the Court reasoned the district court’s decisions regarding Montoya’s competence for sentencing, and its rejection of Montoya’s variance requests did not involve abuse of discretion or plain error. Therefore, the Court found the district court fairly considered the facts in the full record and made a proper determination and sentencing. The Court held that the district court did not abuse its discretion and reasonably imposed the sentence given. AFFIRMED.