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Buitron v. Holder

United States District Court, S.D. Illinois

August 19, 2014

GABRIEL BUITRON, No. 96705-080, Petitioner,
v.
ERIC HOLDER, and JAMES CROSS, Respondents.

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

DAVID R. HERNDON, Chief District Judge.

Petitioner Gabriel Buitron, an inmate currently incarcerated in the Federal Correctional Institution at Greenville, Illinois, is before the Court pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241, seeking a writ of habeas corpus. More specifically, Buitron challenges the Bureau of Prisons' execution of his sentence.

This Section 2241 petition is before the Court for preliminary review. Rule 4 of the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases in United States District Courts provides that upon preliminary consideration by the district court judge, "[i]f it plainly appears from the petition and any attached exhibits that the petitioner is not entitled to relief in the district court, the judge must dismiss the petition and direct the clerk to notify the petitioner." Rule 1(b) of those Rules gives this Court the authority to apply the rules to other habeas corpus cases.

Procedural History

In 1997, petitioner Buitron was convicted in Mexico of aggravated homicide; he was sentenced to imprisonment for 27 years, six months (330 months). Petitioner was transferred to the custody of the United States Bureau of Prisons to serve his sentence, pursuant to the Treaty Between the United States of America and the United Mexican States on the Execution of Penal Sentences, Nov. 25, 1976, 28 U.S.T. 7399 (hereafter "the Treaty"), and its implementing legislation,

Pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 4106A(b)(1)(A), the United States Parole Commission adapted Buitron's foreign sentence so that it can be administered under the laws of the United States. The Commission concluded that Buitron should serve a full term of 312 months, and a 60-month term of supervised release, or until the full term of the foreign sentence-calculated to be February 14, 2025-whichever is earlier ( see Doc. 1, pp. 2, 19-20, 23).[1]

Buitron appealed the Commission's determination to the Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in accord with Section 4106A(b)(2)(B), which dictates that the determination proceed as though it were a sentence. The Commission's adapted sentence (which included an upward departure) was affirmed. Buitron v. United States Parole Commission, 73 Fed.Appx. 759 (5th Cir. 2003).

In 2004, Buitron filed what was construed as a Section 2241 petition raising Sixth Amendment challenges to the Commission proceedings. The petition was dismissed due to lack of jurisdiction because the grounds for relief should have been brought in the direct appeal to the Fifth Circuit. Buitron v. Veltri, Case No. 04-cv-676-WDS (S.D. Ill., Doc. 13 Filed Sept. 6, 2005). No appeal was taken.

In 2006, Buitron filed another attack upon the validity of the sentence conversion, challenging a wide variety of perceived constitutional defects in the Commission's proceedings. Buitron invoked 28 U.S.C. § 451 as the jurisdictional basis for the petition, but the Court perceived that Buitron was attempting to file a Section 2255 petition and dismissed the petition for lack of jurisdiction. Buitron v. Warden, Case No. 06-cv-421-DRH (S.D. Ill., Doc. 3 filed July 6, 2006). No appeal was taken.

Most recently, in 2013, Buitron filed a Section 2241 petition purportedly asserting a treaty violation relative to how the term of supervised release and good conduct credits are being imposed by the Bureau of Prisons-which he insisted was not a challenge to the Commission's sentence. The Court concluded that Buitron was in fact challenging the Commission's sentence, asserting claims not cognizable under Section 2241. Nevertheless, out of an overabundance of caution, the Court went on to analyze the claims, finding them meritless. Put succinctly, it was explained that whenever Buitron was released from prison after the application of good conduct credits, his 60-month term of supervised release was capped so that the term of imprisonment and term of supervised did not, in combination, exceed the 330-month foreign sentence. Buitron v. Holder, et al., Case No. 13-cv-974-DRH (S.D.Ill., Doc. 23 filed Feb. 10, 2014). No appeal was taken.

The current Section 2241 petition was filed six months after Buitron's 2013 Section 2241 petition was dismissed.

The Petition

In dismissing Buitron's 2013 petition, the Court noted that if Buitron had truly been challenging the Bureau of Prisons' implementation of the sentence, he would have made arguments regarding the calculation of the good time credits and how they altered the release date. The Court went on to offer a detailed discussion of the sentence. Apparently construing the Court's comment as an invitation and ignoring the analysis of his sentence in the Court's previous decision, Buitron now offers some discussion of the calculation of his good conduct credits vis-à-vis, his release date and full-term sentence.

Buitron observes that a 312-month term of imprisonment and a 60-month term of supervised release total 372 months, which is well beyond the 330-month maximum sentence. He would calculate his sentence by working back from the 312 month mark, first by accounting for a 60-month term of supervised release, and then deducting the maximum number of good conduct credits possible, which would result in release from prison on April 14, ...


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