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Ninth Circuit Holds That Absconding Tolls Supervised Release for Federal Parolees

The time a released prisoner serves on supervised release is tolled when he or she absconds, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held.

Manuel Ignacio Juarez was deported following completion of his federal prison sentence for bank robbery, but later illegally re-entered the United States. At the time he was deported and when he returned to the U.S., Juarez was still on three years supervised release following his federal prison term.

Upon re-entering the U.S., Juarez did not notify his probation officer that he had returned or where he was living. Two years passed and Juarez was convicted and sentenced to state prison in California for two robberies.

By then a federal warrant had been issued for violation of the conditions of his supervised release. After serving his state sentence, Juarez was taken into federal custody and his supervised release was revoked. He was sentenced to 18 months in federal prison following the revocation.

Juarez argued that the district court lacked jurisdiction to revoke his supervised release because the court’s revocation warrant was issued after his period of supervised release had expired. The Ninth Circuit disagreed, holding that his supervised release was tolled once he returned to the U.S. and did not report to his probation officer.

“Fugitive tolling of a defendant’s term of supervised release begins when the defendant becomes a fugitive,” the appellate court wrote. See: United States v. Juarez, 601 F.3d 885 (9th Cir. 2010).

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Related legal case

United States v. Juarez