Jones v. Lara
PRISCS- RULING AND ORDER: Case transferred to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Signed by Judge Alvin W. Thompson on 4/23/2012. (Payton, R.)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
DISTRICT OF CONNECTICUT
CASE NO. 3:11cv706 (AWT)
F. LARA, WARDEN
RULING AND ORDER
The petitioner is currently incarcerated at the Otisville
Federal Correctional Institution in Otisville, New York.
March 2011, the petitioner filed this petition for writ of habeas
corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 in the United States District
Court for the Southern District of New York challenging a 2002
federal conviction and sentence imposed upon him by Janet C.
Hall, United States District Judge for the District of
On April 25, 2011, the Chief Judge of the United
States District Court for the Southern District of New York
transferred the petition to this District.
The petitioner paid
the filing fee on August 15, 2011.
On February 28, 2002, in United States v. Boyd, et al., Case
No. 3:00cr263 (JCH), the petitioner pled guilty to one count of
conspiracy to distribute five grams or more of cocaine base in
violation of 21 U.S.C. §§ 841(b)(1)(B) and 846.
On December 9,
2002, Judge Hall orally sentenced the petitioner to 164 months of
See id. (Sentencing Hearing and Transcript of
Hearing, Docs. Nos. 1255, 1843.)
The Clerk, however, entered
judgment stating that the petitioner had been sentenced to 188
months of imprisonment.
On October 26, 2007, the court granted
the petitioner’s motion to correct a clerical error in the
judgment and directed the Clerk to enter an Amended Judgment
reflecting that the court had sentenced the petitioner to 164
months of imprisonment, to be served concurrently to his state
See id., (Rul. Granting Mot. Correct Error in J., Doc.
The Clerk entered the Amended Judgment on November 2,
On July 21, 2006, the petitioner filed a motion to vacate or
set aside sentence claiming ineffective assistance of counsel at
See Jones v. United States, Case No. 3:06cv1127
On December 14, 2006, the court denied the motion.
id. (Rul. Denying Mot. Vacate, Set Aside, Correct Sentence, Doc.
On February 28, 2008, the United States Court of Appeals
for the Second Circuit dismissed the petitioner’s appeal from the
denial of the section 2255 motion.
See id. (Mandate of United
States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, Doc. No. 18.)
The present petition challenges the petitioner’s federal
conviction and sentence on the ground that the court improperly
sentenced him as a career offender.
Since the enactment of the
Judiciary Act of 1789, the federal court in the district in which
a prisoner is incarcerated has been authorized to issue a writ of
habeas corpus if the prisoner was in custody under the authority
of the United States.
See Triestman v. United States, 124 F.3d
361, 373 (2d Cir. 1997).
U.S.C. § 2241(c)(3).
U.S.C. § 2255.
Today, this authority is codified at 28
In 1948, however, Congress enacted 28
This statute “channels collateral attacks by
federal prisoners to the sentencing court (rather than to the
court in the district of confinement) so that they can be
addressed more efficiently.”
Triestman, 124 F.3d at 373.
Currently, “[a] motion pursuant to § 2241 generally
challenges the execution of a federal prisoner’s sentence,
including such matters as the administration of parole,
computation of a prisoner’s sentence by prison officials, prison
disciplinary actions, prison transfers, type of detention and
Jiminian v. Nash, 245 F.3d 144, 146 (2d Cir.
2001) (emphasis in original) (citing Chambers v. United States,
106 F.3d 472, 474-75 (2d Cir. 1997) (describing situations where
a federal prisoner would properly file a section 2241 petition)).
A § 2255 motion, on the other hand, is considered “the proper
vehicle for a federal prisoner’s challenge to [the imposition of]
his conviction and sentence.”
Id. at 146-47.
Thus, as a general
rule, federal prisoners challenging the imposition of their
sentences must do so by a motion filed pursuant to § 2255 rather
than a petition filed pursuant to § 2241.
Because the present petition challenges the legality of the
petitioner’s sentence, it should have been filed as a motion to
vacate, set aside or correct sentence pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 2255 in the court in which the petitioner was sentenced.
Jiminian, 245 F.3d at 148, the Second Circuit held that a
district court may construe a petition for writ of habeas corpus
filed pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 as a second or successive
motion to vacate, set aside or correct sentence pursuant to 28
U.S.C. § 2255, without providing the petitioner with notice or an
opportunity to withdraw the petition, as long as the petitioner
“has had a prior § 2255 motion dismissed on the merits.”
Here, the petitioner filed a prior motion pursuant to
section 2255 and the court denied the motion on the merits.
Jones v. United States, Case no. 3:06cv1127 (JCH) (Rul. Mot.
Vacate, Set Aside, Correct Sentence) (D. Conn. Dec. 14, 2006).
Accordingly, the court construes the petition for habeas corpus
as a second motion filed pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255.
The district court has no power to entertain a second or
successive section 2255 motion unless the appropriate court of
appeals has authorized the filing of that motion in the district
See 28 U.S.C. § 2244(b)(3); Nelson v. United States, 115
F.3d 136, 136 (2d Cir. 1997) (per curiam) (vacating “for lack of
jurisdiction” a district court judgment that dealt with a
successive § 2255 motion “on its merits” where this Court had not
granted authorization for the filing of that motion).
court determines that a petition raises only claims which are
properly brought under section 2255, that the petitioner has
filed a prior section 2255 motion which was dealt with on the
merits, and that the petitioner has not obtained authorization
from the court of appeals to file a second petition, the district
court must transfer the motion to the Court of Appeals.
Liriano v. United States, 95 F.3d 119, 123 (2d Cir. 1996) (per
Because the petitioner’s prior section 2255 motion was
decided by this court on the merits, the court must follow the
directive given to district courts in Liriano and transfer this
petition, which challenges his federal conviction, to the United
States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in the interest of
justice, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1631.
Accordingly, in accordance with the requirements of 28
U.S.C. § 2255 and pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1631, the Clerk is
directed to transfer this case to the United States Court of
Appeals for the Second Circuit to enable that court to determine
whether the claim raised in this petition should be considered by
the district court.
It is so ordered.
Date this 23rd day of April 2012, at Hartford, Connecticut.
Alvin W. Thompson
United States District Judge
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