Galan v. Outlaw
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER denying the Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus under 28 U.S.C. § 2241 and dismissing this case without prejudice. Signed by Magistrate Judge J. Thomas Ray on 4/21/11. (hph)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS
ARNOLDO OZUNA GALAN
T.C. OUTLAW, Warden,
FCC Forrest City
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
Pending before the Court1 is a § 2241 Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus filed
by Petitioner, Arnoldo Ozuna Galan (“Galan”).2 (Docket entry #1). In his Petition,
Galan attacks the Bureau of Prisons’ (“BOP”) calculation of his sentence. Before
addressing Galan’s claims, the Court will review the procedural history underlying his
conviction and sentence.
On November 16, 1992, Galan was arrested by DEA agents in Texas, and
thereafter, detained. (Docket entry #5-1 at 5, 7). A federal grand jury, in the Western
District of Texas, indicted Galan for possession of marijuana with intent to distribute,
The parties have consented to proceedings before a United States Magistrate
Judge. (Docket entry #7).
Galan is currently incarcerated at FCC Forrest City.
and possession of a false passport.
United States v. Galan, E.D. Tex. No.
1:92CR00221 at docket entry #6. On March 16, 1993, a jury convicted him of both
counts. Id. at docket entry #57.
On April 28, 1993, Galan was sentenced to 284 months in the BOP for the
marijuana possession conviction, and 60 months in the BOP for the false passport
conviction, with the sentences to be served concurrently. (Docket entry #5-1 at 8-9).
On direct appeal, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the convictions, but
vacated the sentences and remanded for resentencing. United States v. Galan, 19 F.3d
15 (5th Cir. 1994) (table decision). On May 20, 1994, Galan was resentenced to 235
months in the BOP for the marijuana possession conviction, and 60 months in the
BOP for the false passport conviction, with the sentences to be served concurrently.3
(Docket entry #5-1 at 12-13).
On June 16, 1994, a federal grand jury in the Western District of Louisiana
indicted Galan for conspiracy to escape from a federal prison. United States v. Galan,
W.D. La. 2:94CR20022. On February 10, 1995, he pled guilty to that charge. Id. at
docket entry #111. On May 5, 1995, he was sentenced to 37 months in the BOP,
“[s]aid sentence . . . to be served consecutive to any other sentence now being served
by the defendant.” (Docket entry #5-1 at 19).
Galan did not appeal his resentencing.
On August 26, 2010, Galan filed this § 2241 habeas action (docket entry #1),
in which he argues that: (1) the BOP has not properly calculated his sentence to give
him credit for his jail time from January 1, 1994, through May 15, 1995; and (2) the
BOP’s calculation error has delayed his assessment for placement in a halfway house.
Respondent has filed a Response (docket entry #5), to which Galan has filed a Reply.
(Docket entries #6).
For the reasons explained below, the Court concludes that the Petition should
be dismissed, without prejudice, due to Galan’s failure to exhaust administrative
First, Respondent points out that Galan never pursued the BOP administrative
remedy process to challenge its calculation of his sentence. The sentence calculation
that Galan challenges has been in effect since March 22, 2000, when the BOP
recomputed his sentence to account for his resentencing in the Western District of
Texas. (Docket entry #5-1 at 27). Until he filed this habeas action, ten years later,
Galan did nothing to challenge the BOP’s recalculation of his sentence.
Galan concedes that he “failed to exhaust his administrative remedies,” but
On February 22, 2011, Galan filed a “Motion for Final Judgment” requesting
a disposition of this case. (Docket entry #9). This Motion is denied, as moot.
makes the conclusory assertion that exhaustion was “futile.” (Docket entry #6 at 1-2).
It is well established that a § 2241 petitioner must exhaust BOP’s administrative
remedies as a prerequisite to pursuing habeas relief in federal court. See United States
v. Sithithongtham, 11 Fed. Appx. 657 (8th Cir. 2001). Galan has done nothing to
establish that exhaustion is futile, and his failure to exhaust compels the Court to
dismiss his Petition, without prejudice.
Nonetheless, even if the Court were to assume that exhaustion was futile,
Galan’s claims are meritless on their face. Galan received an aggregate sentence of
235 months from the Western District of Texas, followed by a consecutive sentence
of 37 months from the Western District of Louisiana, for a total sentence of 272
months in the BOP.
The BOP calculated Galan’s sentence to “commence” on April 28, 1993, when
it was originally imposed in the Western District of Texas.5 The BOP also gave Galan
163 days of prior custody credit for the presentence time he spent in federal detention,
November 16, 1992, until April 27, 1993.
Under 18 U.S.C. § 3585(a), a defendant’s federal sentence “commences”
when he “is received in custody awaiting transportation to, or arrives voluntarily to
commence service of sentence at, the official detention facility at which the sentence
is to be served.” The earliest date a federal sentence can “commence” is the date that
it is imposed. See BOP Program Statement 5880.28, Ch. 1 at Page 13 (“In no case can
a federal sentence of imprisonment commence earlier than the date on which it is
When 272 months is run from April 28, 1993, less 163 days of credit, the
resulting “expiration full term date” is July 17, 2015. (Docket entry #5-1 at 27).
When this “full term” is reduced by 1,049 days of good time credits that Galan has
earned, or is expected to earn, his projected release date is September 1, 2012.
(Docket entry #5-1 at 27).
Galan’s argument that he has not been properly credited for time spent in
custody from January 1, 1994, through May 15, 1995, appears to be premised on
some sort of double counting. Galan ignores the fact that his sentence from the
Western District of Louisiana was ordered to run consecutive to “any other sentence
now being served[.]” The time period that Galan disputes was unequivocally credited
to the “other sentence now being served,” namely the 235-month sentence from the
Western District of Texas. Importantly, 18 U.S.C. § 3585(b) prohibits “double
counting,” i.e. custody credits toward time on a sentence that has already been credited
to another sentence. Thus, Galan’s challenge to the BOP’s calculation of his sentence
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED THAT the Petition for a Writ of Habeas
Because the BOP has properly calculated Galan’s sentence, his collateral
argument that the BOP’s alleged error has delayed his assessment for halfway-house
placement is moot.
Corpus under 28 U.S.C. § 2241 (docket entries #1) is DENIED, and this case is
DISMISSED, WITHOUT PREJUDICE
Dated this 21st day of April, 2011.
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.
Why Is My Information Online?